Laparoscopy Specialist

Gary Harvey, MD

Urogynecologist located in Missoula, MT

Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive way to accurately identify, diagnose, and treat a wide range of problems that cause pelvic pain. Gary Harvey, MD, is an expert urogynecologist and surgeon who performs laparoscopic procedures at his practice in Missoula, Montana. To find out how laparoscopy can help you, call the office or book an appointment online today.

Laparoscopy Q & A

What is laparoscopy?

Laparoscopy is a surgical technique that uses much smaller incisions than open surgery. While open surgery may require an abdominal incision that’s several inches long, laparoscopy incisions are typically half an inch or smaller.

This minimally invasive technique offers numerous advantages over open surgery, such as:

  • Less pain and scarring
  • Faster recovery time
  • Reduced risk of infection

Dr. Harvey may perform laparoscopy as an outpatient procedure, so you don’t need to stay in the hospital. If you do need to go to the hospital, your stay will be shorter than it would be with open surgery.

What is laparoscopy used for?

Laparoscopy has many important uses in gynecology for both diagnosing and treating problems. Dr. Harvey may use laparoscopy to look for the cause of chronic pelvic pain or infertility, especially if noninvasive tests, such as ultrasound, don’t provide enough information for a diagnosis.

If he discovers a problem during a diagnostic laparoscopy, Dr. Harvey may be able to treat it in the same procedure by inserting specialized instruments through the laparoscope. He may also use laparoscopy to diagnose and treat the following conditions:

  • Uterine fibroids
  • Endometriosis
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Pelvic organ prolapse

Depending on your needs, Dr. Harvey may use laparoscopy to perform a surgical procedure, such as a hysterectomy.

What happens during a laparoscopic procedure?

Typically, Dr. Harvey performs laparoscopy while you’re asleep under general anesthesia. He discusses your options and preferences for anesthesia before the procedure.

During the procedure, Dr. Harvey makes a small incision in your abdomen and inserts the laparoscope through it. He fills your abdomen with gas to get a clear view of your reproductive organs. The laparoscope magnifies the surgical site and projects images of your organs onto a screen.

If necessary, Dr. Harvey may make other small incisions in your abdomen to insert surgical tools and perform treatment. Afterward, he removes all instruments and most of the gas from your abdomen and closes the incisions.

Although laparoscopy is less invasive than open surgery, you still need to rest for 1-2 days after the procedure. Dr. Harvey lets you know when you can resume normal activities.

If you think you may need laparoscopic surgery, call the office of Gary Harvey, MD, or book an appointment online today.