• Advanced procedures may be performed with the horse standing, avoiding general anesthesia
  • Smaller incisions yield fewer complications and shorter recovery times
  • Improved visualization for most procedures as compared to traditional open approaches


Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive surgical technique used to explore and treat conditions within the abdomen.  This procedure is generally performed in an awake but sedated standing horse, restrained in stocks.  The entire procedure is made possible through pain management with local anesthetics (lidocaine) and epidural anesthesia, with the patient experiencing minimal to no discomfort.  Similar to arthroscopy, instead of a large incision opening the entire abdomen, small ‘key-hole’ incisions (roughly 1.5cm) are made.A digital camera with a fiberoptic light source and surgical instruments are introduced through the small incisions in order to explore the abdomen. Additional specialized instruments may be inserted through another incision to address or repair lesions.

Laparoscopic exploration is a valuable diagnostic tool for conditions such as chronic colic and weight loss.  Laparoscopy can be used therapeutically, to correct or treat lesions causing some types of chronic or recurrent colic, perform ovariectomy (ovary removal), tumor excision, breakdown of adhesions, perform cryptorchidectomy (removal of a retained testicle), obtain biopsies, among others.

Extended laparoscopy incision for removal of large ovarian tumor.

Cryptorchid (retained) testicle hiding within abdomen.

Retreival of cryptorchid (retained) testicle.

Ligated vasculature following removal of cryptorchid (retained) testicle.


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