Keyhole Surgery

At The George Veterinary Hospital we are proud to be able to offer our clients choice when it comes to certain surgical procedures. As a practice we continually invest in the development of our teams and facilities to provide the best possible care and service for you and, most importantly, your pets.

While Laparoscopic surgery has become the gold standard for a wide range of operations in humans, it is still far less employed for procedures on animals throughout the UK. It requires a substantial investment in both specialist equipment and the additional training of veterinary surgeons and so many veterinary practices do not consider this a viable opportunity. However, the benefits for both pets and owners, over some traditional open abdominal surgery procedures, are clear with reduced levels of pain for the patient, less risk of complications and a quicker recovery time just a few of the important considerations for pet owners.

What is laparoscopy?

Keyhole image

Laparoscopy is a procedure which benefits from the use of a small incision (the "keyhole") to facilitate the entry of a special telescope (endoscope) into the abdomen, to which is attached a small camera. Clear, magnified images are relayed to a large screen in the operating theatre where the veterinary surgeon has a full view of internal organs but without the need for a large incision. One or two further tiny holes are then made which allow entry of the specialised instruments needed to perform the specific operation.

 

What are the key advantages of this type of surgery?

  • A recent study concluded laparoscopic speys caused less surgical stress and up to 65% less post-op pain. This is due to the smaller incisions and a reduction in the abdominal retraction and manipulation required. 
  • The entire procedure is performed through a few keyhole incisions rather than a larger abdominal opening. Smaller incisions are less painful and reduce recovery time. 
  • Decreased risk of wound infection 
  • With a laparoscopic bitch spey the bitch's activity restriction is less critical during the post-surgical period (although restriction to lead exercise is recommended for 10 days) 
  • Laparoscopy allows better visualisation of abdominal organs.
  • Controlled incisions eliminate the pain and bruising caused by the tearing of tissue. 

 

Download our leaflet on Laparoscopic Bitch Speys here for more information

 

Is there an increased cost for choosing laparoscopy?

Although costing slightly more than traditional open surgery the benefits of laparoscopic surgery are evident and worth consideration. There is a higher level of surgical expertise and investment required; our most experienced soft tissue surgeons Cyril Hayes and Mike Hollywood are both qualified to perform laparoscopy.  We will always discuss the options with you prior to any decision being taken - we simply wish to offer you the best choice possible.