BayCare Medical Group and St. Joseph’s Hospital-North general surgeon Dr. Quan Tran performs advanced minimally invasive surgical procedures using a single incision to remove gallbladders and appendixes, according to a news release. The acronym for this surgery is SILS, for single incision laparoscopic surgery.
Gallbladders are typically removed because of complications from gallstones, and appendixes are typically removed when they become swollen or infected.
SILS is an advantage over traditional surgery, which usually requires multiple incisions.
Often, this single incision is hidden completely within the belly button or leaves the patient with a scar that is barely noticeable.
In addition to the improved cosmetic result, one incision can mean less pain for the patient and a quicker recovery time following surgery.
A specialized camera is the key to single-site surgery because of the flexibility of the tip and visual clarity it gives the surgeon.
St. Joseph’s Hospital-North in Lutz recently added one of the most modern state-of-the-art cameras for SILS.
“It is a camera system that flexes 100 degrees in every direction as opposed to a regular laparoscopic camera which is set at 30 or 45 degrees,” Tran said in the release.
“This allows me to place the camera in the abdomen at an angle, which allows me to be able to perform the operation without the camera getting in the way of my instruments,” Tran said.
The camera projects a large magnified image of the surgical area onto a monitor.
Dr. Tran said SILS procedures require an experienced surgeon highly skilled in laparoscopic surgery and a surgical team that understands the nuances of the operation and camera system. He has performed several thousands of these procedures over the last decade at St. Joseph’s Hospital-North.
“If you want to have SILS surgery, it is important to find a surgeon that has been properly trained,” Tran said. “It’s not an easy operation due to the confinement of the space and inversion of your hands (left is right and vice versa). The learning curve is quite steep with most surgeons requiring up to 50 operations before becoming completely comfortable with the technique.”
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