This page will give you information about a diagnostic laparoscopy. If you have any questions, you should ask your GP or relevant health professional.

What is a Diagnostic Laparoscopy?

A diagnostic laparoscopy is an operation using keyhole surgery to look at your abdominal and pelvic organs. For some women, minor treatments can be performed at the same time.

What Are the Benefits of Surgery?

A diagnostic laparoscopy is good for finding out the cause of lower abdominal and pelvic pain, certain period problems and infertility. The operation will help to find out if you have endometriosis, pelvic infection, adhesions, damaged fallopian tubes, an ectopic pregnancy, ovarian cysts or fibroids.

Are There Any Alternatives to Surgery?

It may be appropriate to try to find the cause of your symptoms using a blood test, x-rays and scans.

The Procedure

What Does the Laparoscopy Operation Involve?

The Laparoscopy Procedure is usually performed under a general anaesthetic. The operation usually takes about 15 minutes.

Your gynaecologist will make several small cuts on your abdomen. They will insert surgical instruments, along with a telescope, inside your abdomen and perform the operation.

What Complications Can Happen?

General Complications

  • Pain
  • Feeling or being sick
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Blood clots

Specific Complications

  • Surgical emphysema
  • Developing a hernia near one of the cuts
  • Damage to structures such as your bowel, bladder or blood vessels
  • Failure to find out what the problem is
  • Failed procedure
  • Infection of the gynaecological organs or bladder
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Following Surgery

How Soon Will I Recover?

You should be able to go home the same day. The healthcare team will tell you what was found during the laparoscopy and discuss with you any treatment or follow-up you need.

Rest for one to two days and take painkillers if you need them.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the health care team or your GP for advice.

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Summary

A diagnostic laparoscopy helps to find out the cause of certain gynaecological problems. For some women, minor treatments can be performed at the same time.

If you would like to receive more information on a Diagnostic Laparoscopy procedure at New Victoria Hospital or to make an appointment, please call our Outpatient Department on 020 8949 9020 or:

Book an appointment

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Miss Rowena Bevan

MA (Cantab), MD, FRCOG Subspecialty Reproductive Medicine
Specialities
Gynaecology
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