Kumar Dasmahapatra, M.D., chair, Department of Surgery at Raritan Bay Medical Center, answers a few important questions about these new techniques.
Q What types of surgery can be done using these techniques?
: These newer techniques, called minimally invasive techniques, are used in many types of surgery, from hysterectomy to hip replacements.
Q how is minimally invasive surgery different from traditional surgery?
: Instead of making one long incision, as in traditional surgery, surgeons use one or more much smaller incisions.
Then they insert tiny cameras and surgical tools through these small incisions.
Depending on the procedure, they may use x-rays or other forms of imaging to guide their movements.
Q What are the benefits of minimally invasive surgery versus traditional surgery?
: Minimally invasive surgery has many potential benefits: less pain after the operation, faster recovery, less blood loss, lower risk for infection, and less muscle damage.
Often, minimally invasive procedures can be performed as outpatient surgery.
Q are these new surgical techniques risky in any way?
: If your doctor recommends surgery, you should always ask about the risks involved.
Every surgical procedure, even if performed with a minimally invasive technique, may pose risks.
Some of the preparation is the same as it is for traditional surgery.
But depending on the type of surgery, you may not need general anesthesia.
Q does this mean i can resume normal activities sooner?
: These newer techniques almost always mean less pain and faster recovery.