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Minimally Invasive Surgery

At SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital, our expert SLUCare Physician Group surgeons use special instruments which allow for smaller incisions during your child’s surgery. Minimally invasive means that your child’s scar may be much smaller than with traditional surgery. For your child, this equals less pain and quicker healing!

Minimally Invasive Techniques

Our surgeons use a tiny, thin telescope with an attached camera and light to see inside your child’s body during surgery. The image from the camera is sent to a screen that they watch to perform the operation. Long tubes with specialized heads, guided by our surgeons, act as hands to operate inside the body. Some of these instruments are only 3 millimeters wide, similar to the thickness of a telephone cord.

With the latest innovation, called single port access, all necessary instruments are inserted through a single point on the body, typically a child’s belly button.

The number and size of the incisions vary depending on the type of operation. For simple procedures, such as the removal of an appendix, only three small incisions (all less than half an inch) are necessary. Of course, some operations may not be possible or safe with minimally invasive techniques. In that case, traditional surgical methods may be used.

St. Louis Fetal Care Institute

Our nationally recognized physicians offer exceptional care for expectant mothers and their developing babies.

Common Conditions Treated with Minimally Invasive Surgery

  • Lung biopsy
  • Lung cyst
  • Complicated pneumonia
  • Insertion of feeding tube
  • Removal of spleen or gallbladder
  • Tumor or mass in pancreas
  • Constipation
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • CDH: Congenital diaphragmatic hernia
  • GERD: Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Pyloric stenosis
  • Hirschsprung Disease

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