What is an Omentectomy?

The omentum surrounds the stomach and other abdominal organs.

In medicine, an omentectomy is a procedure in which part or all of the abdominal lining is removed. The tissue removed is called the omentum. This fatty organ is made up of an area of ‚Äč‚Äčlining, or peritoneum, that surrounds the stomach and other abdominal organs. For a long time, the omentum was thought to have no important functions, but biologists now believe that it may have an important role to play in maintaining the internal physiological environment.

Laparoscopic surgery is less invasive, allowing for a faster recovery with less chance of complications.

An omentectomy procedure may involve the complete removal of the omentum, in which case it is called a total or supracolic omentectomy. A partial omentectomy involves removing only part of the omentum. Surgical removal of the omentum can be performed by cutting an incision in the abdomen or, alternatively, through a small opening, in which case it is called a laparoscopic omentectomy.

An omentectomy may be performed in case of ovarian cancer.

In cases of ovarian, intestinal, or endometrial cancer, omentum can be performed if cancer cells have migrated into it. In these cases, removal is likely to be performed during surgery to remove the primary tumor. Removing the omentum can also reduce the chances of the cancer spreading from nearby organs to the stomach, so in some cases, the procedure may be performed as a precautionary measure, even if the omentum does not yet harbor detectable cancer cells.

Patients should be given plenty of rest after an omentectomy.

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In some cases, omentectomies can be performed on patients suffering from diabetes. This procedure is most often performed when the patient is obese. Removal of the omentum may improve the patient’s long-term insulin resistance. Although the function of the omentum is not fully understood by biologists, it appears to play a significant role in glucose and fatty acid metabolism, which is likely the reason it is implicated in diabetes.

Removal of the omentum itself is generally considered a relatively safe procedure.

Removal of the omentum itself is generally considered a relatively safe procedure. Documented side effects tend to be rare and minor. When performed alongside other surgery, this procedure is often considered the safest part. Complications that arise after surgery are more often attributed to the trauma of the surgery itself than to the direct result of the removal of the omentum. Despite this overview, some clinicians believe that omentum removal should not be performed lightly, as the long-term impact of an omentectomy on a patient is not fully understood and the procedure can have far-reaching physiological implications.

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