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Laparotomy surgery is a medical procedure during which doctors perform a large abdominal cut in order to gain access to patient’s internal organs. Laparotomy procedure was once a very common diagnostic method. However, in the advent of modern diagnostic procedures such as laparoscopy, the importance and prevalence of laparotomy surgery in diagnostics has dwindled.

Still, it doesn’t mean that laparotomy incision stopped to be popular. It is performed as part of other surgeries, including abdominal hysterectomy, stomach, liver, bowel surgeries and others. It also is used as a diagnostic tool from time to time.

Currently, we can divide laparotomy procedures into 3 major types:

• Exploratory laparotomy – diagnostic laparotomy, performed in search of medical issues impossible to detect with other methods or invisible due to the lack of proper equipment

• Emergency laparotomy – doctors often decide to perform laparotomy for abdominal pain. They hope to quickly find sources of abdominal pain and deal with them

• Laparotomy procedure as a part of bigger surgery – laparotomy may be the first step in a medical procedure such as operation on stomach, bowels or other internal organs


Laparotomy vs Laparoscopy

Laparotomy constantly loses its position as a diagnostic tool and operation method to laparoscopy procedure. It is so primarily because of laparoscopy recovery time being shorter than laparotomy recovery time. Additionally, laparoscopic surgery involves 3 or more small cuts, while laparotomy incision creates a one, long laparotomy scar.

Still, some diseases and medical conditions cannot be solved through laparoscopic surgery and old school laparotomy surgery becomes necessary. Additionally, if laparoscopy procedure goes wrong and leads to complications, doctors often decide to continue the surgery through a laparotomy incision.

Laparotomy (25 Clinics)

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Koç Healthcare Institutions
Istanbul, Turkey
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Acibadem Maslak Hospital
Istanbul, Turkey
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Ethica Incirli Hospital
Istanbul, Turkey
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Medical Park Gaziosmanpasa Hospital
Istanbul, Turkey
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Medical Park Antalya Hospital
Antalya, Turkey
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Florence Nightingale Istanbul
Istanbul, Turkey
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Medical Park Bahcelievler Hospital
Istanbul, Turkey
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Medical Park Ankara Hospital
Ankara, Turkey
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Medical Park Goztepe Hospital
Istanbul, Turkey
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Wellborn Clinic
Bucureşti, Romania
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Laparotomy surgery of any kind may not be really suitable for people who are allergic to general anaesthesia. Doctors check it before every laparotomy procedure in order to get sure that they do not put the patient at high risk.
If laparotomy is performed as an emergency laparotomy or exploratory laparotomy, often there is not enough time to properly prepare. However, if it is a part of a larger medical procedure, patient’s doctors will inform about a specific type of preparation one needs to undergo.

Laparotomy incision is performed under general anaesthesia. Abdominal laparotomy involves a quite large laparotomy incision, which allows doctors to see the inside of one’s abdomen and search for sources of medical issues and, having found them, start the treatment.

After the laparotomy surgery is finished, doctors clean the abdominal cavity and stitch the laparotomy incision.


Laparotomy recovery time is generally longer than laparoscopy recovery time. However, laparotomy recovery is also dependent on the type of laparotomy (exploratory laparotomy, emergency laparotomy, as a part of other surgery). In general, total laparotomy recovery time may take weeks or even months, not to mention the issue of laparotomy scar.
Laparotomy incision inevitably leads to the laparotomy scar. Still, laparotomy procedure is not performed for cosmetic reasons and the possibility of saving somebody’s life or health is more important than the appearance of laparotomy scar.
Laparotomy surgery may lead to some laparotomy complications, including infection, bleeding, damage to internal organs. Among laparotomy complications are also hernias and long-term pain. However, laparotomy procedure may also be performed as a response to laparoscopy complications.
The success rates of laparotomy surgery depend primarily on the type of surgery and treated disease. For this reason, it is hard to calculate a general success rate for laparotomy of any kind, be it exploratory laparotomy, emergency laparotomy or laparotomy procedure as one of the stages of other surgery.

What Is Laparotomy Surgery?

Laparotomy surgery is an abdominal incision performed in order to examine the patient with unknown sources of pain (exploratory laparotomy union help in an urgent medical issue (emergency laparotomy) or as a part of a larger surgery.


How Long Is the Laparotomy Recovery Time?

Laparotomy recovery time depends on the type of surgery performed but it is usually longer than analogic laparoscopic surgery.


Is There a Way to Avoid Laparotomy Scar?

Laparotomy scar is an inseparable part of laparotomy surgery. Laparotomy procedure is performed as a solution to serious medical issues and it is usually more important than possible scarring.