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In a traditional spay operation a 2- to 5-inch incision is made in your pet's abdomen. The veterinarian then removes the ovarian ligaments from the abdominal wall, in some cases blindly. This harsh removal of this ligament can cause internal bruising and postoperative pain, especially in larger dogs. In many cases, your pet may be required to stay at the hospital overnight to ensure there are no complications. Incisions can take up to two weeks to heal and during that time pets can tear long incisions open. The incision can also become infected, requiring additional trips to the veterinary hospital or emergency vet, more medications and more cost.
Our veterinarian inserts the laparoscope (a slim device with a tiny camera on the end of it) into the abdomen where the camera magnifies the ovarian ligaments. The operating instrument is inserted into a second incision, allowing the vet a clear and magnified view of the ovarian ligaments so that she can carefully cauterize and cut the ligaments rather than having to tear blindly. Once each small incision is sutured, your pet is observed for a few hours and sent home the same day.
Compared to traditional spay operations, laparoscopic technology reduces your pet's postoperative pain by up to 65 percent and decreases her anesthesia time. Not only will she have a far less stressful trip to the animal hospital, but she will heal much faster and likely need fewer follow-up trips to the pet hospital and hopefully none to the emergency room.
Pictured above is Dr. Glassman performing a laparoscopic spay.
Laparoscopy can also be used to locate retained testicles. These pets are called cryptorchid, meaning that during fetal development one or both of the testicles is retained in the abdominal cavity instead of moving down into the scrotum.
Above (right) is a picture of a laparoscope being used to locate a retained testicle in a cat. The above picture (left) shows the doctor removing the testicle after it was located with the laparoscope.
Actual image of a dogs abdomen immediately after
a Laparoscopic spay was performed by Dr. Glassman.
(Notice the two 3/16" size incisions.)
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