CENTER VALLEY, Pa.—Olympus this month announced the availability of a surgical system that allows surgeons to remove the gallbladder through the belly button using a single incision of only 12-15mm in size. This one-of-a-kind system, developed over a five-year period, will better enable laparoendoscopic single-site surgery (LESS) and encourage a wider-spread adoption of using a single incision for gallbladder removal.
Working closely with leading surgeons and Advanced Surgical Concepts (ASC), Olympus developed the components necessary to conduct LESS procedures such as LESS Cholecystectomy (the surgical removal of the gallbladder), including an access-port device (manufactured by ASC), instrumentation, and a state-of-the-art, high-definition, flexible-tip laparoscope with imaging capabilities. These components have been designed to work seamlessly together and their integration is critical to the success of performing single-site surgery, according to an Olympus news release.
Gallbladder surgery is one of the most common surgical procedures performed in the United States— nearly one million are conducted every year. Up until now, the surgery has been performed through four small incisions—each of which can cause scarring, pain, bleeding, infection and hernia. Olympus’ new system now makes it possible for surgeons to perform the procedure through one dime-size incision using four instruments, rather than creating four separate incisions.
Single-site surgery is still in its infancy in the United States. However, a group of internationally recognized surgeons from the United States, Europe and Asia recently published a white paper in the journal, Surgical Endoscopy, describing a standardized methodology for LESS Cholecystectomy. This standardization aims to smooth the transition to LESS procedures for the surgical community.
“I have tried single-site surgery in my practice and found it achievable," said Dr. Henry Davison Jr., Princeton Surgical Associates, P.A., Plainsboro, N.J. “I have started to use the standardized method and have found the procedure and my time commitment to be as manageable as my previous four-port technique. My practice has been building by word of mouth as a result of the LESS option, and most importantly, my patients are pleased with the results and minimization of scars. Also, the length of stay seems to be much shorter, with patients going home from the recovery room soon after surgery."