iStock 000002996193XSmallLaparoscopy is a method of examining the inside of the abdomen and pelvis through tiny incisions under a general anesthesia. It is typically done in an outpatient hospital setting and you go home a few hours later.

It is very useful in detecting and treating endometriosis and adhesions, as well as ovarian cysts, and for evaluating for causes of infertility, and a number of other gynecologic conditions which cause gynecologic problems.

Most women take a few days off work after a laparoscopy. Generally, at WHC, laparoscopies are done on Wednesdays, and women return to work or school the following Monday.

Complications are unusual but can occur. Your provider will discuss risks, benefits, alternatives, goals and rationale for recommending this procedure.

A very good description of laparoscopy and what to expect from it is available through the ACOG Brochure on Laparoscopy.