In minimally invasive surgery, doctors use a variety of techniques to cause less damage to the human body during a surgical procedure when compared to open surgery. In general, minimally invasive surgery is associated with less pain, a shorter hospital stays and fewer complications.

Laparoscopy is a surgical procedure carried out done through one or more small incisions, using small tubes and tiny cameras and surgical instruments and was one of the first types of minimally invasive surgery. Another type of minimally invasive surgery is robotic surgery. It provides a magnified, 3D view of the surgical site and helps the surgeon operate with precision, flexibility and control.

Continual innovations in minimally invasive surgery make it beneficial for people with a wide range of conditions. If you need surgery and think you may be a candidate for this approach, talk with your doctor.

Surgeons perform many minimally invasive surgeries on specific parts of the body, including: adrenalectomy (to remove one or both adrenal glands); brain surgery; colectomy (to remove parts of a diseased colon); gallbladder surgery or cholecystectomy (to relieve pain caused by gallstones); heart surgery; hiatal hernia repair, sometimes called anti-reflux surgery, to relieve gastroesophageal reflux disease; kidney transplant; nephrectomy (kidney removal); spine surgery or splenectomy (to remove the spleen).

Minimally invasive surgery emerged in the 1980s as a safe and effective technique to meet the surgical needs of many people. In the last 20 years, many surgeons have come to prefer it to traditional (open) surgery, which requires larger incisions and, usually, a longer hospital stay.

Minimally invasive surgery uses smaller surgical incisions, and it's generally less risky than traditional surgery. But even with minimally invasive surgery, there are risks of complications with anesthesia, bleeding and infection.

Since 2016 the Alvor and Gambelas Hospitals have had the most advanced technology for laparoscopic surgery.

The Alvor Hospital has equipment with a Full HD image system and 2D visualisation, while the Gambelas Hospital has the Einstein Vision 3D system. The advantages as mentioned above, all enhance visual precision, spatial orientation of surgical gestures and also in the ease of handling the equipment.

The HPA was one of the first institutions in the Algarve to systematically implement laparoscopic surgery, relying on important case studies and innovative experience, in the scope of the various medical specialities.

This surgical method has numerous advantages for the patient. It is usually less painful, has fewer perioperative and postoperative risks, namely hemorrhage, consequently allowing a speedier return to day-to-day professional and social activities. The results of anesthesia are practically unnoticeable after a short period of time, due to the reduced time necessary and the size and number of scars.

We celebrated this month the opening of the HPA in Gambelas 12 years ago, we would also like to congratulate its advanced Laparoscopy Center that has saved and restored quality of life to hundreds of patients.