Information About Abdominal Trauma
A laparotomy is typically performed on patients who have sustained abdominal trauma, where imaging tests such as CT scans and x-rays cannot provide a diagnosis. The abdomen is opened in order to access the appendix, bladder, gallbladder, intestines, kidney, ureters, liver, pancreas, spleen, stomach, and/or uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. During the procedure, a biopsy can also be taken.
Types of Abdominal Injuries
- Ruptured Spleen
- Hepatic Injury/Lacerated and Ruptured Liver
- Trauma Pancreatic Injury
- Diaphragmatic Rupture Injury
- Kidney Trauma
- Pelvic Trauma
A laparotomy can be done when someone experiences abdominal trauma after an accident, or in order to help diagnose and treat certain cancers, gallstones, endometriosis, intestinal perforations, acute appendicitis, diverticulitis, acute or chronic pancreatitis, liver or abdominal abscesses, an ectopic pregnancy, or scar tissue in the abdomen. Exploratory laparotomies should be performed in accordance with those standards associated with laparotomy.
The procedure is also sometimes known as an “exploratory laparotomy,” and often helps medical providers determine the underlying pathology and confirm a diagnosis, as well as being a therapeutic procedure. However, an exploratory laparotomy can be helpful when acute-onset of abdominal pain suggests that emergency surgery may be necessary.
A vertical midline incision is typically made in the upper, middle, or lower midline, and the surgery is guided by the initial findings. For example, massive hemoperitoneum suggests that the patient may have a major source of bleeding. Once the procedure is completed, it is crucial that the surgeon double-check to ensure that the instrument and pads are all accounted for before closing the abdominal wall.
Risks and Optimizing Patient’s Condition
There are risks associated with the procedure, including bleeding, blood clots, infection, reaction to medicines, incisional hernias, and damage to organs in the abdomen. Before the procedure is performed, your healthcare provider should undergo a complete physical exam and perform various tests to ensure that your body can tolerate the surgery and that any other medical conditions such as diabetes, lung problems, high blood pressure, etc. are under control and will not interfere with your progress. In addition, decompression of the stomach and bladder can help reduce the risk of injury during the procedure.
Procedure and Techniques
In the case of the trauma laparotomy, once the surgeon has access to the bleeding area, controlling the bleeding is the number one priority. Whether or not to fix the tissue or simply stop the bleeding is made on a case-by-case basis. In the case of the patient suffering from edematous or distended bowel, laparostomy and delayed closure is the preferred option over immediately closing the abdomen.
Our Experienced Massachusetts Injury Attorneys are Here to Help You. Free consultation. No obligation. No fee unless we recover for you.
The skilled personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan have provided protection and legal representation to clients in Boston and surrounding areas of Massachusetts for years, achieving countless settlements and jury verdicts for accident victims. Learn more information about our services; get in touch with us today.
For your free, no-obligation case review and consultation call our law firm today at (508) 588-0422 and you will have taken your first step towards getting fair compensation for your injuries or for the loss of a loved one. You can also click here to use our Free Case Evaluation Form.
We offer a free, no-obligation legal consultation to help you understand your rights and the value of your case.
Our personal injury trial lawyers handle all types of accident claims including those involving facial accidents, throughout all of Southeast Massachusetts including, but not limited to, those in the following counties, cities and towns: Plymouth County including Brockton, Plymouth, Bridgewater, Marshfield, Hingham, Duxbury, Wareham, Abington, Rockland, Whitman, Hanson, Middleborough; Norfolk County including Quincy, Stoughton, Dedham, Weymouth, Braintree, Avon, Holbrook, Randolph, Canton, Sharon, Brookline, Franklin; Bristol County including New Bedford, Fall River, Taunton, Attleboro, Mansfield, Easton, Raynham, Norton; and the Greater Boston area including Cambridge, Dorchester, Roxbury and Somerville.
A pneumothorax is a collapsed lung. The condition occurs when air leaks into the space between the chest wall and lungs. The air pushes on the outside...
If you are experiencing chest pain and coughing up blood after a traumatic incident or a car crash, you may have a pulmonary contusion. Make sure you ...
Blunt aortic injuries are classified by type of injury. The three main types of blunt aortic injury are as follows: (1) an aortic rupture often leads ...
Spleen injuries occur when there is a significant impact to the spleen from some outside source, like an automobile crash, damaging or rupturing the s...
Injuries to the pancreas are not common. The pancreas is protected by many other organs. If the pancreas is injured due to blunt trauma, other organs ...
A subdural hematoma is the result of a serious head injury. Generally, a hematoma is a collection of blood outside of the blood vessel, artery or vein...
Chest trauma describes any physical injury to the chest, including to the lungs, heart, and ribs. Chest trauma specifically due to blunt force is a si...
Diaphragmatic trauma typically results from penetrating or blunt trauma, where 80 to 90% of blunt diaphragmatic ruptures are due to car accidents. Lat...