Infertility may have gripped over 20% of the reproductive-aged population, but a scope of fertility treatments has helped many to overcome problems with conception and rekindled the hope of parenthood. Among the various infertility treatment options, laparoscopic surgery is one of the advanced tools and techniques considered a boon for pelvic fertility conditions.
Laparoscopy for infertility is an advanced technique that has substantially replaced traditional surgeries for infertility. Unlike traditional surgical procedures, laparoscopy requires small incisions made under the navel region through which the camera and light-aided instrument are inserted to perform necessary diagnosis cum treatment. Hence this procedure is otherwise called “keyhole surgery”.
This article gives you an insightful view of the laparoscopy infertility surgical procedure, reasons for performing it, advantages, and possible side effects.
1. What is Laparoscopy Surgery For Infertility?
Laparoscopy for infertility is a minimally invasive surgery that allows the doctor to view the interior of the pelvic region of the ovaries, fallopian tubules, uterus, and cervical region. The various conditions of the abdomen/pelvic region such as endometriosis, uterine fibroids, Polycystic ovarian cysts (PCOS), pelvic adhesions can be detected and treated effectively.
Laparoscopy gets its name from the instrument used, the laparoscope, which is a light-aided device with a camera installed on one side and a long flexible tube that allows easy penetration into the narrowing regions of the pelvis. The light aids a clear view of the internal organs while the camera aids real-time images that are displayed on the monitor.
There are certain tests such as blood analysis, urinalysis, electrocardiogram (ECG), X-ray, imaging tests such as CT Scans, and MRI Scans done before the laparoscopy.
Laparoscopy can be used to remove the affected/diseased area or organ. It can be also used to extract a tissue sample for further screening or biopsy. It can be combined with other procedures such as hysteroscopy to confirm the reports of other diagnostic tests.
2. The procedure of Laparoscopy Surgery
Laparoscopy for infertility generally involves the administration of anesthesia and is performed as an outpatient procedure. The procedure of laparoscopy can be described as below.
- Mostly, general anaesthesia is administered to let you sleep while the procedure is performed. But sometimes, local anesthesia is given to numb the area locally. In both cases, pain is not felt during the procedure.
- Later, 2-4 incisions of around 1-2cm length are made below the navel. A small flexible tube called a cannula is first inserted to inflate the abdominal region with carbon dioxide gas. This inflation procedure is essential to view the abdominal organs.
- After the abdominal inflation, the laparoscope is inserted through the incision. The camera of the laparoscope assists by capturing the images and displaying them on the screen in real-time.
- Additional instruments are inserted according to the procedure and the necessary infertility diagnosis or laparoscopy infertility treatment is performed.
- Once the required procedure is performed, the cannula, laparoscope, and other instruments are removed and the incisions are closed with a surgical tape or stitched.
- After the surgical procedure, vital breathing rates, heartbeats, are monitored closely. Adverse anesthetic reactions are also observed. A few hours after the slowing down of the anesthetic effects and once all the parameters are normal, the patient will be discharged.
Diagnostic laparoscopy for infertility involves a couple of incisions and is performed only to detect the underlying infertility cause while operative laparoscopy is performed to treat, correct or repair the infertility reason with a couple of more incisions. Laparoscopy also uses a 3D viewing camera for 3D laparoscopy and robotic machinery in robotic laparoscopic procedures.
If you are worried about the cost, laparoscopy for infertility costs in India starts with INR 20,000 and increases according to the treatment and extent of the procedure performed.
3. Who is a Good Candidate For This Surgery?
Women with elevated risk factors, abnormal physiological findings, or long-standing infertility will need laparoscopic assessment and/or treatment. Some of the conditions that indicate the candidates for laparoscopy are:
- Laparoscopy is considered when Hysterosalpingography reports are not clear or suspicious. Hysterosalpingography is a special X-ray that detects the presence of blocked fallopian tubes. Laparoscopy for blocked fallopian tubes can help remove the blockages and improve fertility treatment success rates; any hydrosalpinx can be clipped.
- Endometrial growths outside the uterus can impede fertility causing abnormal menstruation and acute pelvic pain. This condition of endometriosis, especially mild endometriosis, can be addressed through laparoscopy.
- PCOS condition treatment may require ovarian “drilling”. Laparoscopic ovarian drilling can help ovulate regularly.
- Repair of the distorted uterus, removal of fibroids, or correction of pelvic adhesions can be done through a laparoscopic procedure.
- Sometimes, IVF becomes a priority after laparoscopic surgery, if the age of the woman is advancing and fertility factors too need to be addressed, then moving ahead with IVF treatment would be a better choice.
- Removal of large endometrial cysts can cause a reduction in ovarian reserves and so, your doctor can guide you best on the possible options of endometrial cyst removal.
4. What To Expect from Laparoscopy Surgery?
Laparoscopy can effectively diagnose and treat fertility issues. Laparoscopy is performed under anesthesia and as the anesthetic effect comes down, one may observe a slight sore throat. Pain, discomfort near the incision area, abdominal bloating due to carbon dioxide usage are post laparoscopic symptoms that recedes within a few days of surgery. Sometimes pain is felt near the shoulders that subside within a day or two. For pain symptoms, pain medications and antibiotics are prescribed with ample rest for a couple of days. Taking care of the wounds, cleaning and dressing the wounds is necessary to avoid secondary infections.
One may require one or two weeks of recovery time post-laparoscopy after which daily activities can be incorporated slowly. After a laparoscopy for infertility, one can expect the following benefits.
- Improved chances of pregnancy after laparoscopy
- Less scarring and quick healing wounds due to small incisions
- Minimum stay at the hospital
- Lesser pain and discomfort.
You will need to keep a check of the symptoms. If you find any of the below rarely occurring symptoms post laparoscopy, you will need to seek medical help.
- Severe and unbearable abdominal pain
- Fever of more than 101 degrees Fahrenheit
- Pus formations or bleeding at the incision site
5. Side Effects of Laparoscopy Surgery For Infertility
The laparoscopy infertility procedure is relatively safe and effective with very minor side effects. However, some of the less commonly occurring side-effects of laparoscopy for infertility are:
- Infection of the bladder after surgery
- Skin irritation around the wounds
- Infections or bleeding at the site of incision
- Allergic reactions due to anesthesia
- Possibilities of blood clots in the abdominal walls.
Also Read: Secondary Infertility
Laparoscopy for infertility has proved beneficial in both diagnosing and treating a wide range of fertility conditions. The basic purpose of laparoscopy is to understand the internal pelvic condition, analyze and treat it with minimum incisions. After a laparoscopy infertility surgery, one can expect a quick healing process, less discomfort, and improved chances of conceiving. Get connected with Omya for all the required details about laparoscopy for infertility and get treated for your fertility concern.
Omya applies cutting-edge technology that merges with highly skillful and experienced hands for better results in infertility treatment in Delhi. We provide you comprehensive patient care with cost-effective solutions without compromising on quality standards. They offer a full suite of embryology and andrology fertility services in one, convenient location.