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Additional recommended knowledge
In diagnostic laparotomy (most often referred to as an exploratory laparotomy), the nature of the disease is unknown, and laparotomy is deemed the best way to identify the cause.
In therapeutic laparotomy, a cause has been identified (e.g. peptic ulcer, colon cancer) and laparotomy is required for its therapy.
Usually, only exploratory laparotomy is referred to as a surgical operation by itself; and when a specific operation is already planned, laparotomy is considered merely the first step of the procedure.
Depending on incision placement, it may give access to any abdominal organ or space, and is the first step in any major diagnostic or therapeutic surgical procedure of these organs, which include:
Types of incisions
The most common incision for laparotomy is the midline incision, a vertical incision which follows the linea alba.
Midline incisions are particularly favoured in diagnostic laparotomy, as they allow wide access to most of the abdominal cavity.
Other common laparotomy incisions include:
A related procedure is laparoscopy, where cameras and other instruments are inserted into the peritoneal cavity via small holes in the abdomen. For example, an appendectomy can be done either by a laparotomy or by a laparoscopic approach.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Laparotomy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|