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What can I Expect from Laparoscopy for Endometriosis?

By Lori Smith
Updated May 17, 2024
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A procedure known as laproscopy is sometimes necessary to diagnose endomitriosis, a condition that causes uterine problems. During this exploratory and minimally invasive operation, which is usually performed as an outpatient procedure, the doctor will look for the migrated tissue implants within the pelvic and abdominal cavity. When displaced microscopic cells are discovered, they can be cauterized or ablated to relieve the discomfort and pain that is often associated with endometriosis. A laparoscopy for endometriosis can be expected to cause pain at the surgical site, shoulder pain, or a sore throat in the first few days following the procedure.

Most women who undergo laparoscopy for endometriosis do so because they endure moderate to severe chronic pelvic pain that becomes worse during menstruation. When endometriosis is the suspected cause, a doctor may want to perform exploratory surgery to confirm and treat your condition. In addition to endometrial implants, a surgeon may discover other conditions that are typical in women with endometriosis, such as uterine fibroids, adenomyosis or ovarian cysts, all of which are common in women with pelvic pain.

Laparoscopy for endometriosis is typically performed while the patient is sedated under general anesthesia. For this reason, you will not be conscious during surgery. The procedure itself usually does not last for more than an hour, but due to the anesthesia that is used, it may seem like only seconds have passed when you awake.

After surgery, you may experience notable discomfort in your lower abdomen. You may also feel achiness in your neck or shoulders. Recovery room nurses are normally standing close by, ready to offer pain medicine to relieve your discomfort. Additionally, you may feel very groggy as a result of the residual effects of the anesthesia coupled with the pain medicine.

In addition to surgical discomfort in the pelvic area, you may also wake up with a mild sore throat that typically lasts for a few days. This can be attributed to the endotracheal tube used to help you breath during laparoscopy for endometriosis that is performed under general anesthesia. Throat lozenges can usually help ease this type of discomfort.

Shoulder pain is also quite common. During a laparoscopy for endometriosis, gases are used to inflate the abdominal cavity. Even though most of the gas is removed at the conclusion of the procedure, some of it inevitably escapes. It migrates to the upper part of the body and can cause shoulder pain for a few days. During this time, it is a good idea to keep the upper half of your body somewhat elevated, which may relieve some of the pressure.

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