Stereotaxic surgery uses a three-dimensional system of coordinates obtained by X-ray photography to accurately focus high-intensity radiation, cold, heat, or chemicals on tumours located deep in the brain that could not otherwise be reached. Cryosurgery uses extreme cold to destroy warts and precancerous and cancerous skin lesions and to remove cataracts. In the late 20th century, some traditional techniques of open surgery were being replaced by the use of a thin, flexible fibre-optic tube equipped with a light and a video connection; the tube, or endoscope, is inserted into various bodily passages and provides views of the interior of hollow organs or vessels. Accessories added to the endoscope allow small surgical procedures to be executed inside the body without making a major incision (Johanson, 1994).
Surgery of each abdominal organ is dealt with separately in connection with the description of that organ (see stomach, kidney, liver, etc.) Diseases affecting the abdominal cavity are dealt with generally under their own names (e.g. appendicitis). The three most common abdominal surgeries are described below.
In a diagnostic laparotomy, the nature of the disease is un...
peptic ulcer, colon cancer) and laparotomy is required for its therapy. Usually, only diagnostic laparotomy is referred to as a surgical operation by itself; and when a specific operation is already planned, laparotomy is considered merely the first step of the procedure.
Depending on incision placement, it may give access to any abdominal organ or space, and is the first step in any major diagnostic or therapeutic surgical procedure of these organs, which include the lower part of the digestive tract (the stomach, duodenum, jejunum, ileum and colon), the liver, pancreas and spleen, the bladder, the female reproductive organs (the uterus and ovaries) and the retroperitoneum (the kidneys, the aorta, abdominal lymph nodes)
The most common incision for laparotomy is the midline incision, a vertical incision which follows the linea alba. The upper midline incision usually extends from the xiphoid process to the umbilicus, while a typical lower midline incision is limited by the umbilicus superiorly and by the pubic symphysis inferiorly. Sometimes a single incision extending from xiphoid process to pubic symphysis is employed, especially in trauma surgery. Midline incisions are particularly favored in diagnostic laparotomy, as they allow wide access to most of the abdominal cavity.
Other common laparotomy incisions include:
the Kocher (right subcostal) incision (after Emil Theodor Kocher); appropriate for operations on the liver, gallbladder and biliary tract;
the Davis or Davis-Rockey "muscle-splitting" right lower quadrant incision for appendectomy;
the Pfannenstiel incision, a transverse incision below the umbilicus and just above the pubic symphysis, most often employed for cesarean section;
Lombotomy consists of a lumbar incision which permits