Diagnosing Fertility Problems with Laparoscopy

Laparoscopy is a procedure that involves making a few small incisions in the abdomen so the doctor can insert a special lighted scope (laparoscope) and surgical instruments. The laparoscope is a fiber-optic tube fitted with a camera and light. This allows the doctor to view the inside of the abdominal cavity and make repairs on screen.

laparoscopyWhy is laparoscopy done?

The fertility specialist in Denver may suggest laparoscopic surgery to diagnosed the cause of female infertility. This procedure is performed after other testing is completed. The doctor may suggest a laparoscopy to determine your source of pain for clients with symptoms of endometriosis, ectopic pregnancy, or inflammatory disease. In addition, laparoscopic surgery can be used to treat certain causes of infertility, which improves your chance of becoming pregnant.

How do I prepare for the laparoscopy?

You cannot eat or drink for eight hours before the scheduled procedure. Because anesthesia is used, you should arrange for someone to drive you home. To prepare your home environment, be sure to have certain items available, including heating pad, pain medication, soft food, thermometer, feminine hygiene supplies, books, and movies to watch. When you arrive at the medical facility, a nurse will go over the pros and cons of the procedure, ask you to sign a consent form, and have you change into a gown. After this, an IV will be placed in your arm to administer necessary medications.

How is the laparoscopy done?

The laparoscopy is performed using general anesthesia, which means the patient is put to sleep. The doctor makes 2-4 small incisions (cuts) around your belly button and abdominal region. The abdomen is filled with carbon dioxide gas so the doctor can visualize the organs. Using small instruments and the laparoscope, the doctor can determine what is wrong and make necessary repairs.

How does the laparoscopy feel?

laparoscopy edited photoDuring the procedure, you will not experience any pain because of the general anesthesia. After you wake up, expect mild hoarseness and a sore throat due to the tube used for breathing during surgery. The incisions will feel tender and sore for 1-2 days after the procedure, and you may experience bloating and sharp pains due to the carbon dioxide. Most people can go home on the day of the surgery, and you should take it easy for 1-2 weeks.

What do the laparoscopy results mean?

The Colorado fertility specialist can visualize the pelvic organs and structures, looking for scar tissue, adhesions, cysts, endometrial growths, and fibroids. These abnormalities can be removed using the instruments. In addition, the doctor assesses the fallopian tubes for patency (openness) and evaluates the cervix. Mild endometriosis is assessed using the microscope after tissue is taken by biopsy. The surgeon is able to open the fallopian tubes with this procedure.

How well does laparoscopy work?

Surgery relieves the pain associated with endometriosis and other conditions. Between 70% and 95% of women report pain relief within the first month following surgery. Research shows that treatment of moderate to severe endometriosis will improve your chances of pregnancy.

What risks and complications are associated with the laparoscopy procedure?

As with all surgery, certain risks should be considered. While rare, these include formation of scar tissue, heavy bleeding, infection, blood clots, and injury to organs.

For treatment with one of the top reproductive specialists in Colorado, call Rocky Mountain Fertility Specialists. Dr. Deborah Smith has over 20 years of experience in all aspects of fertility workup and treatment, call today!

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