Keyhole surgery is generally considered safer than open surgery. However, cuts or burns to the bowels can occur during laparoscopy. This is partly because it’s not always possible to see organs clearly.
Mistakes can include damage to or perforation of organs, such as the colon or rectum. Other issues can occur if the surgery:
- fails to remove all diseased parts of the bowel
- unnecessarily removes healthy parts of the bowel
- fails to ensure the parts of the bowel are connected correctly after the diseased part is removed.
Tears or other injuries can lead to infections and, in serious cases, septicaemia and organ failure. Other injuries can include a restricted blood supply to the bowels or a hernia in the area of the surgical incision.
Can laparoscopic surgery cause bowel obstruction?
It is possible, in a few cases, for laparoscopic surgery to cause bowel obstruction. A bowel obstruction is when food and liquids cannot move through the intestines.
An obstruction causes cramping, pain, vomiting and inability to pass bowel motions. The condition may require emergency treatment in hospital to prevent serious complications.