SWEC is located at St George Private and Public Hospitals
(02) 9553 6500

Every day hundreds of women in Australia undergo surgery for treatment of pelvic disease.

Until recently this involved open surgery (laparotomy) for the treatment of common problems such as urinary incontinence, endometriosis, ovarian cysts, pelvic floor prolapse, muscle growths within the uterus (fibroids) or for the removal of a uterus itself (hysterectomy). Today however, modern technology allows us to complete these same standard surgeries using far less invasive techniques, in particular, laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery.

What is Open Surgery?

Open surgery involves cutting a large 8cm to 10cm incision into the abdomen to expose the area of the body on which the operation is to be performed. Much of the postoperative pain is due to this large incision. As a result of this you often need to stay in hospital for five to seven days. In some cases you may also require up to six weeks of recovery before you are able to return to normal activities, such as, your usual occupation. In addition to the disruption to your family life and employment, open surgery also carries a bigger risk of adhesion and infections. This is due to the increased exposure of body tissue to the external environment that is necessary in open surgery.

Is there an alternative to Open Surgery?

Yes. The alternative is laparoscopic surgery or commonly referred to as keyhole surgery. Laparoscopic surgery or keyhole surgery eliminates the need for a large incision and is a safe and effective alternative to open surgery.

What happens in Keyhole Surgery?

Most keyhole surgeries involved only few half to one centimetre incisions. The first is made at the navel where a viewing telescope attached to a camera and light source (the laparoscope) is passed through a specially designed tube into the abdomen. This allows the surgeon to see the operative area on a video monitor. Two or three other small incisions are made to create passageways for other specially designed surgical instruments, which help the doctor to carry out the same types of procedures as in open surgery, the only difference being that surgeons refer to the video output to guide them through the surgery. No need for large incisions and painful procedures.

What do I do now?

Every woman is individual and her situation requires an individual plan of management. If you think these issues relate to you, call us at SWEC on (02) 9553 6500 to arrange a personal consultation and discussion of your case.


Get in touch



St George Private Hospital
1 South Street
Kogarah NSW 2217