The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Pioneering laparoscopic surgery undertaken at St James's

17 September 2014

LTHT consultant Mr Giles Toogood has become one of the first surgeons in the world to perform  laparoscopic surgery using instruments only 3 millimetres (mm) in diameter which will leave smaller scars and offer quicker recovery.

Mr Toogood used kit developed by Leeds company Surgical Innovations to remove the gall bladder of a 36-year-old patient in an operation at St James's.

The fact that he was able to use such tiny instruments to carry out the operation means the scars will be smaller than traditional laparoscopic surgery. It also reduces the amount of post-operative pain and provides a 50% reduction in internal tissue damage.

3mm surgery is less invasive than traditional laparoscopy as it enables smaller incisions to be made in the abdomen.  It promotes quicker healing and saves the patient the discomfort of stitch removal.

Mr Toogood, said: "Surgeons have gone from 12mm, to 10mm, 5mm and now 3mm, it is a natural evolution to get smaller. The bottom line has to be improved patient outcomes and we believe that 3mm surgery can offer a reduction in post-operative pain and quicker recovery times which is essential."

"Compared to 5mm, 3mm surgery is like a scratch on the skin - there is a very noticeable different in the sizes of post-operative scars. It’s incredible and I am delighted that we were one of the first hospitals to use this type of pioneering surgery."

The Surgical Innovations technology, known as LAP3 kits, were launched this week at the Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland (AUGIS).