Safety is another concern when developing new surgical procedures, so Dr. Manassero was pleased to find that spays could be performed without using a transabdominal suspension suture, which is often used to hold the ovary close to the incision site when performing a laparoscopic spay using single access ports – this reduced the number of incisions required.
Laparoscopic Spay Risks
But the transabdominal suture is not without its own risks, including the potential to damage the blood vessels to the ovary, causing bleeding into the abdomen. It also makes the surgery more cumbersome. With the multiple access port, however, two instruments can be used simultaneously with the laparoscope, making the process easier and avoiding the potential risks of the transabdominal suture.
Moving Laparoscopic Surgery into Mainstream Veterinary Medicine
Given the positive results from this initial study, Dr. Manassero feels that there is tremendous potential for laparoscopy for other surgical procedures as well. At present, however, most veterinary clinics do not offer laparoscopic spays. As the price of equipment comes down, and people begin to request minimally invasive surgery options, this is likely to change.
Interested in the process? To view a laparoscopic spay of a bengal tiger at Tufts University, watch the video below.
Manassero, M., Leperlier, D., Vallefuco, R., and Vlateau. V. Laparoscopic ovariectomy in dogs using a single-port multiple-access device. (2012). Veterinary Record. 2012.171:69 doi:10.1136/vr.10060. Accessed September 12, 2012.
University of Southern California. What is Laparoscopic Surgery? (2012). Accessed September 12, 2012.
Veterinary Laparoscopy for Pet Owners. Frequently Asked Questions. (2012). Accessed September 12, 2012.
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