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  Home > News Press Release > FIRST LAPAROSCOPIC COLON SURGERY PERFORMED IN THE BAHAMAS AT DOCTORS HOSPITAL
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News Press Release

FIRST LAPAROSCOPIC COLON SURGERY PERFORMED IN THE BAHAMAS AT DOCTORS HOSPITAL
Dated of posted : 2010-10-01

FIRST LAPAROSCOPIC COLON SURGERY PERFORMED IN THE BAHAMAS

AT DOCTORS HOSPITAL

 
Each year, many surgical procedures are performed in the Bahamas to treat a number of colon problems – intestinal inflammation, ulcerative inflamed colon, Crohn’s colitis, colonic polyps not amenable to removal by colonoscopy, tumors (benign and malignant), hemorrhage as well as other entities. And although rather successful, patients undergoing surgery faced a long and difficult recovery as the traditional procedures were highly invasive, requiring long incisions and an average stay in hospital of 5-8 days and usually requiring six weeks of recovery.

Laparoscopic colon surgery is a new technique that is rapidly gaining popularity because of its advantages over the “open” method of surgery. Never before done in the Bahamas until now, the minimally invasive technique of laparoscopy can be used to treat a wide range of colorectal diseases. Laparoscopy achieves the same results as traditional surgery, but patients recover faster and experience less pain.

Dr. Wesley P. Francis, Surgical Oncologist, recently returning to the Bahamas, highly trained and bringing a wealth of experience recently introduced this procedure to his practice and as such, recently performed the first ever laparoscopic colon surgery in the Bahamas. Although Laparoscopic colon surgery was introduced almost twelve years ago, it was never before done in the Bahamas perhaps because laparoscopic colorectal surgery requires extensive and highly specialized training, takes a long period of time to master and few surgeons are qualified to perform these procedures.

For the benefit of the lay person, Dr. Francis elaborates on the procedure, “Laparoscopic colon surgery is a technique whereby the colon can be removed using several small incisions. Traditionally, removal of the colon has been accomplished using one larger incision. The use of smaller incisions leads to less pain after surgery, less time in the hospital, and a quicker return to work and full activity. The surgeon makes about four or five small one-half inch incisions, a tiny telescope attached to a video camera is inserted into one of the openings, allowing the surgeon to see inside the abdomen. Instruments are then inserted through the other openings and are used to remove the diseased section of bowel and reattach the healthy segments. A slightly larger incision is usually made to remove the diseased section of colon from the body. The surgery takes 2-3 hours”.

Traditional "open' procedures to correct colorectal disorders begin with a large abdominal incision, 8 to 12 inches long. Because of the healing time required by this wound, patients may spend a week or more in the hospital, and they experience significant post-operative pain. With laparoscopic surgery, patients experience less pain and return home in four or five days and there is no large scar. Within a week or two they can return to all normal activities, including work.

The laparoscope, which is a telescopic video camera, usually gives surgeons a better view of internal organs than they can achieve with the naked eye in a traditional open procedure. Patients lose less blood during laparoscopic surgery than during traditional surgery, and they experience fewer infections and other complications. Virtually all patients who need colorectal operations are candidates for laparoscopy. There are a few patients, however, who require the open procedure.

Doctors Hospital is one of only a few hospitals in the region with a surgeon certified to use laparoscopic surgery in the treatment of colon conditions including diverticulitis, Crohn's disease (occurring in the small intestine as well as the colon), chronic ulcerative colitis, constipation, sigmoid volvulus (intestinal obstruction), and endometriosis. Doctors Hospital is equipped with the latest laparoscopic technology, including three-dimensional imaging equipment and the most advanced ultrasound instruments in use anywhere.
 


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