During laparoscopy, a small incision is made in the abdomen and a thin, lighted tube called a laparoscope is inserted into the abdomen. Tissue samples can be collected for biopsy through the scope. Other instruments, such as surgical scissors, can be inserted through additional incisions.
In many cases, laparoscopy can eliminate the need for a more extensive operation (laparotomy) that would require a larger incision in the abdomen. Laparoscopy can be less risky, less stressful, and less costly than laparotomy and can often be done without requiring an overnight stay in the hospital.