Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery
Sutter Women's Services
When treatment calls for surgery, Sutter doctors look for the least invasive and most effective approach. There are a number of minimally invasive surgical techniques available today, which can often be performed in place of traditional surgeries requiring long incisions and lengthy recoveries. Many of these techniques can now be performed in an office setting and under light sedation rather than general anesthesia. Though surgeons use different techniques and equipment, depending on the condition they are treating, all minimally invasive surgeries use tiny video cameras and surgical tools placed through small incisions.
Benefits of Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgeries
• Shorter hospital stay
• Faster recovery times
• Less pain
• Smaller incisions
• Less blood loss
• Fewer infections
• Earlier return to normal activities
• Less scarring
• Fibroid uterine tumors
• Uterine prolapse
• Heavy menstrual periods (menorrhagia)
• Irregular menstrual periods (metrorrhagia)
• Acute and chronic pelvic pain
• Recurrent pregnancy loss
• Benign ovarian cysts
• Uncontrolled bleeding
Urologic (Bladder) and Vaginal
• Stress incontinence
• Intrinsic sphincter deficiency
• Urinary retention
• Voiding dysfunction
• Uterovaginal prolapse
• Vaginal prolapse
Delivered in conjunction with the highly respected Sutter Cancer Center, Sutter’s Gynecological Oncology Clinic employs the latest research to provide advanced gynecologic cancer care including surgical care, chemotherapy and other cancer treatments.
• Cervical cancer
• Endometrial and uterine cancer
• Fallopian tube cancer
• Ovarian cancers (epithelial, germ cell tumor, low malignant potential tumor)
The goal of gynecologic care is to enable women to live fully, no matter what stage of life they are in. For that reason, treatments are highly individualized, depending on the condition’s severity, the woman’s age, and whether she wants to have children.
Hysteroscopic Diagnosis and Surgery
Hysteroscopy requires no incisions, instead allowing doctors to insert small video cameras and fiber-optic lights through the vagina to examine the interior surfaces of the vagina, cervix (colposcopy) uterus (hysteroscopy) and fallopian tubes (falloscopy). Images are projected onto a screen, making it possible for doctors to “see” structures clearly, without opening the area. When abnormalities are found, the doctor can also insert tiny surgical tools to remove them, perform biopsies or repair structures. Hysterectomies, fibroid tumors removal, tubal occlusion for permanent sterilization, and endometrial ablation to treat heavy menstrual bleeding are often performed using hysteroscopy.
Laparoscopic Diagnosis and Surgery
Laparoscopy requires one or more small incisions to allow doctors to place fiber-optic lights, cameras and small surgical tools into the abdominal or pelvic cavities. When diagnostic imaging techniques do not provide an adequate view of the area of concern, laparoscopy may be used as a diagnostic tool. Laparoscopy enables doctors to examine tissue and organs and perform surgery within the abdominal and pelvic regions using small incisions (less than one-half to one inch) rather than opening up the area with large incisions.
da Vinci®: Computer-Assisted Surgery
The da Vinci Surgical System combines computer and robotic technologies to provide exceptional visualization, precision, dexterity and control that allows surgeons to perform more complex laparoscopic surgeries. The da Vinci Surgical System provides surgeons with a magnified, high-resolution 3D image of the surgical site and allows a surgeon’s hand movements to be scaled, filtered and translated into precise movements of micro-instruments within the operative site. Surgeons still control the instruments and surgery; the system simply assists them by providing better views and greater control. Incisions are typically less than one-half to one inch, compared to six-to-eight-inch incisions required in traditional surgeries. Robotic surgery most commonly used for gynecological and urological surgeries, including hysterectomies.
One feature that distinguishes Sutter’s gynecologic services is an array of specialists who focus exclusively on women’s health conditions. Click on the links below for a complete list of physicians by specialty:
• Obstetrician/Gynecologists (Ob/Gyn): Gynecological specialists focus on conditions affecting women’s reproductive systems.
• Urogynecologists: Urogynecologists are physicians who have completed three years of specialized training in women’s pelvic health and pelvic reconstructive surgery, a subspecialty of obstetrics and gynecology, with an emphasis on medical and surgical treatment of benign conditions affecting the female pelvis.
• Gynecologic Oncologist: Gynecologic oncologists are gynecologists or medical oncologists who have additional training and specialize in treating cancers located within a woman’s reproductive system.