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Minimally Invasive Procedures

For a decade or so, surgeons have used scopes, or laparascopes to be more exact, to operate through smaller incisions, thus earning the name laparascopic or "band aid" surgery.  The technique has become standard, in select cases, for many routine surgeries formerly requiring larger incisions.

The process involves inflating the area with carbon dioxide gas, then passing the scope through a small incision of the abdominal wall and a second small incision to the affected area, such as the appendix.

You have heard many variations of the term with scope as the root, such as arthroscopy for joints and colonoscopy for the colon.

Assisted by views from a video screen, doctors have a virtual reality tour through the scope in the affected part of the body.

New technology has evolved to robotics-assisted surgery, such as Baptist Health Corbin's da Vinci Surgical System.  The da Vinci robot allows the surgeon to work the tiny hands of the robot from a console across the room.  The robot's "hands" can reach in smaller places, causing less blood loss and scarring.  It is being used locally for prostate surgery and hysterectomies; other uses will follow.