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Open vs. Laparoscopic? NO CONTEST!!

Posts: 337
Joined: Nov 2014

Hey, guys,

I'm a little over 2 weeks removed from the gallbladder surgery, which was switched to open after the surgeons couldn't get it out laparoscopically. I've seen some people wonder about the difference between the 2 styles and I guess I'm in a pretty good position to compare the two and give you some insight. 

This is hell. The pain is a lot worse with the open incision (which is about 7.5 inches long). It's pretty much constant. It's come down to a duller pain in the past few days, but any kind of physical exertion that lasts more than 30 minutes pretty much does me in. For some reason the fatigue isn't as bad this time, though. Not sure why that's the case, but there you go. 

I think that's why I'm so crabby now. I don't have the fatigue so I want to get back to life, but the pain is definitely ruling my life right now! I'm usually not one to complain but the fact that this is the second time in less than 6 months that I've been laid up is frustrating beyond belief. I was prescribed Percocet this time but it's been 2 days since I've had them. I hate painkillers. I don't feel myself when I'm on them. But when I'm off them I'm a baby because it sucks to feel pain all the time. It's a no win scenario  

So... Long story short... If you have a choice to have surgery done laparoscopically rather than open TAKE IT. I would even recommend going out of your way to find a doctor who is proficient in it because this recovery has SUCKED. 

Thanks for listening to me whine. 

- Jay

Positive_Mental_Attitude's picture
Posts: 454
Joined: Jul 2014

Jason, I respectfully and vehemently disagree.  First, have you ever heard of the saying, no pain no gain?  Toughen up, you whiner! Just kidding.  Smile

But seriously, I have read too many stories and accounts of laparascopic surgeries that resulted in a radical nephrectomy, whereas an open surgery would have more likely resulted in a partial.  So, are you saying the minor inconvenience of a little bit of additional post-operative pain is worth getting radical versus a partial nephrectomy?  And not all open surgeries are alike.  How do you know that the majority of your pain is from the aborted lap job, and not from the open surgery?  I had an open surgery on a Thursday, and by Monday I was off pain meds and walking 6 miles per day.  I think it is hard to judge based on two people's different experiences, but I am saying that I would opt for an open surgery 100 times before going for a laparascopic surgery for the perceived benefit of shorter recovery time---because I could not imagine my recovery time being any shorter than it was.  Perhaps I need to count my lucky stars and thank my surgeon again. 

I hope you feel better soon.  Weather still is cold in our neck of the woods, and hopefully, we will see some spring weather here soon?

icemantoo's picture
Posts: 3221
Joined: Jan 2010



As I read the post you started with a lap and someone threw a curve ball at the begining of the game and the manager switched to an open,





foxhd's picture
Posts: 3183
Joined: Oct 2011

I rode over 600 miles on my motorcycle and camped for a week just a few weeks after my lap removal of my G.B. If they did a radical procedure, they would have found my kidney tumor. I'll never understand why people worry about which procedure is used. You're still gonna heal.

Posts: 337
Joined: Nov 2014


Very true on a couple points... guess what I had a lap and he had to take the whole thing out so... you got a point there haha...

I'm just going by the pain factor of the two procedures that I have had. I'm a whiner at the end of the day, but in a couple weeks I will have (hopefully) moved on and forgotten all about it. I think that the plan has a lot to do with it... That is, they PLANNED to do lap but the plan changed. SO in the end I got BOTH scars... Between this and the last time I look like I got shot 10 times and slashed in a bar fight a couple times. 


Allochka's picture
Posts: 871
Joined: Nov 2014

Wish you to get better soon!

But everyone is different. My boyfriend wasn't in that much pain after open surgery at all. He stopped taking pain meds after several days, and a week after his surgery we were already going to short walks...

Anyway, as Fox have said - the method doesn't mattter, it is the result that counts!

APny's picture
Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar 2014

I have to also agree with PMA. I too had an open partial surgery and it really wasn't nearly as painful as you describe your gall bladder surgery. I guess you can't compare the two because of location, the type of organ, and if I remember correctly, your gall bladder was very tough to get out. Plus your incision is fairly large. Mine is under five inches, closer to 4, and my surgery was about 1 1/2 hours. So really, I think it depends on where and what is being operated on more than the methodology.

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