If you develop a serious infection in your spleen or need treatment for certain cancers, you may need a surgical procedure known as a splenectomy. At Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, the experienced surgeons offer a minimally invasive splenectomy to remove damaged spleens before they rupture. The surgeons can minimize your risk for pain, bleeding, infection, and other complications by making only small incisions that heal quickly. Call the office in Somerville, New Jersey, to find out if you’re a candidate for a splenectomy or book an appointment online today.

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What is a splenectomy?

A splenectomy is a surgery to remove a damaged or diseased spleen. Your spleen is in the upper left part of your abdomen under your rib cage. The organ is responsible for fighting off germs and infections and also filters toxins out of your blood.

You may need a splenectomy to treat issues that affect your spleen’s health or function. These issues can include:

  • Cysts
  • Blood clots
  • Abscesses
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Lymphatic cancer
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Overactive spleen (hypersplenism)

The Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, providers may recommend surgery when other treatments aren’t working well. You may also need an emergency splenectomy if your spleen suddenly ruptures.

What happens during a splenectomy?

Your Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, surgeon provides general anesthesia during a splenectomy to help you sleep comfortably and be pain-free. They use minimally invasive surgical techniques that only require small incisions in your abdomen, just below your rib cage.

Your provider first fills your abdomen with a harmless gas to expand it and make it easier to access the spleen. A specialized surgical tool your surgeon uses has an attached camera that sends real-time images of the surgical site to an external monitor. Your provider watches the monitor to remove your spleen with a high level of precision.

If you need surgery to treat cancer, your surgeon may also remove lymph nodes in your abdomen to check for cancerous cells. After surgery is complete, your surgeon closes the incisions with stitches.

If you’re not a candidate for minimally invasive surgery to remove your spleen, the surgeon can use open techniques that require longer, deeper incisions.

How long does it take to recover from a splenectomy?

After a laparoscopic splenectomy, you can expect to spend 1-2 days in the hospital.

If you need open surgery, you may need to stay for up to a week. Your Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, provider continues to monitor your vital signs and the healing of your incisions to prevent postsurgical complications.

Following a splenectomy, your other organs compensate for the loss of your spleen and naturally take over its many functions.

However, without a spleen, you may be more susceptible to infections. Your provider can discuss strategies, such as getting routine vaccinations, to lower your risk for infections.

Call Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, to schedule a splenectomy consultation or book an appointment online today.