What is Spleen Surgery?

Splenectomy is a procedure used to remove your spleen. The spleen is an organ under the rib cage on the upper left of the abdomen, and the spleen helps to fight infection. It filters unneeded material from your blood.

Splenectomy is done by using a tiny video camera and a laparoscopic device. The purpose of splenectomy is to treat a ruptured spleen, often due to an abdominal injury. Still, It is used to treat a wide range of diseases like enlarged spleen(splenomegaly), blood disorders like polycythemia Vera and thalassemia, cancers( Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma), infections, and cyst or tumors inside the spleen.

Is there any risk associated with Spleen Surgery?

Splenectomy is considered a safe procedure but bleeding, blood clot formation, infections, or injuries to organs near the spleen are some side effects of this procedure.

How to prepare for a Spleen Removal?

The surgeon will help you to get prepare for the procedure. The doctor will probably give you vaccines against viruses and bacteria as your immune system may weaken after spleen removal surgery. It would help if you also got a blood transfusion to ensure that you have enough platelets and red blood cells to bear this surgery.

Your doctor will ask you to avoid certain medicines days before the surgery. Avoid eating or drinking any fluids several hours before the procedure.

What happens before the procedure?

The surgeon will give general anesthesia before the treatment. The team will monitor the heart rate, blood oxygen level, blood pressure during the entire procedure.

During the procedure?

After the anesthesia, the surgeon use either a minimally invasive (laparoscopic) or open (traditional) procedure to remove the spleen. The selection of methods depends upon the size of the spleen. If the spleen is larger, the surgeon will choose an open splenectomy.

Laparoscopic splenectomy. 

Laparoscopic splenectomy involves four small incisions in the abdomen. The surgeon will insert a tube with a tiny video camera into the abdomen through any incisions—the surgeon will see the video on a monitor and remove the spleen using surgical tools. The surgeon will then close the incisions.

The ruptured spleen generally needs this procedure. In some cases, the surgeon will follow a laparoscopic procedure and make a larger incision because of the previous scar tissue from an operation or other complication.

 Open splenectomy

During open splenectomy, the surgeon will make an incision in the middle of the abdomen and moves aside muscle and tissue to reveal your spleen. The surgeon will then removes the spleen and suture the incision.

After the procedure?

After the procedure, the team will take you to a recovery room, and you can go home the same day of the surgery if you had laparoscopic surgery. In contrast, you will be allowed to go home after two or six days after open surgery.

You can resume daily life activities after two weeks after laparoscopic surgery and six weeks after open surgery.