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Gold award for keyhole surgery in York

Patients undergoing keyhole surgery at York Hospital are getting some of the best treatment in the country according to the professional body that regulates and advises on standards and practices in laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery in the UK.

The Association of Laparoscopic Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland in an annual audit has given York Hospital a gold award for the standard of their laparoscopic facilities.

Keyhole surgery has many benefits for patients such as smaller scars, fewer wound complications and less pain but requires dedicated training for surgeons to use the technique. The equipment is more expensive than that used in conventional surgery and needs to be of the highest standard to qualify for a gold award.

Lead surgeon for laparoscopy at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Mr Ian Bradford, said: "We are extremely proud of the facilities we provide in York so being recognised for a gold award is a fantastic achievement for us. Currently we provide a wide range of laparoscopic surgery techniques for patients in general surgery, lower and upper gastrointestinal surgery, urology and gynaecology.

"Recent investment in state-of-the art high definition (HD) camera and monitor systems has meant operations are becoming safer because of the improved image quality and resolution.

"This is really important because, not only do we train other surgeons in these techniques, we are also the only hospital in Yorkshire running a dedicated training course for laparoscopic theatre staff. We are one of a selected few hospitals that have 'virtual reality' keyhole surgery simulators that allow trainee surgeons to practice their laparoscopic surgery before operating on patients."

Laparoscopic surgery involves a telescope (laparoscope) being connected to a camera head through which images are transferred via a cable to an imaging screen. It helps reduce complications in abdominal surgery and means that patients have a shorter stay in hospital and are more likely to have a quicker return to full activity.

17 August 2012

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