What Does the Removal Procedure for Adrenal Adenoma Entail?


Quick Answer

Adrenal adenomas are usually removed via a laparoscopic adrenalectomy, explains the Johns Hopkins Medicine Department of Surgery. In some cases, a surgeon may remove an adrenal adenoma via an open adrenalectomy. Prior to surgery, the patient receives general anesthesia, and a health care professional places the patient on his back or side. The patient then receives a foley catheter, and a tube is inserted into the nose or mouth and connected to the patient's stomach.

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Full Answer

A health care professional inserts IV tubing in the patient to ensure a steady fluid supply, explains Johns Hopkins Medicine. In a laparoscopic adrenalectomy, the surgeon makes four to five small incisions in the side of the patient's abdomen. The surgeon goes through these incisions to remove the adrenal gland using laparoscopic instruments. In an open adrenalectomy, the surgeon makes one long incision in the patient's abdomen, either across the abdomen or in the middle of it. The surgeon later stitches the incision closed and covers it with steri-strip tape and a dry gauze dressing. The duration of the operation is two to four hours.

After surgery, the patient remains in the recovery room for several hours, notes Johns Hopkins Medicine. Health care professionals closely monitor the patient as he recovers from anesthesia, and he must be on a liquid diet for the evening following the surgery. The next morning, the patient may eat regular food. Because of the anesthesia tubes, he may experience a sore throat post-surgery. Patients can use throat lozenges or spray to ease discomfort. Physicians encourage patients to get up and walk around the night of the surgery, and nurses administer pain medication to patients as needed.

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