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St. Helena Hospital Clearlake Offers Minimally Invasive Laparoscopic Hysterectomies That Can Minimize Scarring and Shorten Recovery Time


Media Contact:

Peggy Dixon, (707)-963-6545,

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Wednesday, December 22, 2010

St. Helena Hospital Clearlake Offers Minimally Invasive Laparoscopic Hysterectomies That Can Minimize Scarring and Shorten Recovery Time 

CLEARLAKE, Calif. — There is good news for women in the Lake County area who require a hysterectomy, but dread the pain and prolonged recovery time historically associated with the surgery.   St. Helena Hospital Clearlake offers a better alternative: minimally invasive laparoscopic hysterectomies performed by Paula R. Dhanda, MD, a highly regarded specialist with years of experience in laparoscopic surgery.

Laparoscopic hysterectomy techniques were developed to reduce pain, minimize scarring and shorten recovery time for women undergoing hysterectomy. The procedure can be done on an outpatient basis, which means a woman can be home resting comfortably within 24 hours and back to her normal activities sooner.

It is estimated that each year, 600,000 women in the United States undergo hysterectomies, making hysterectomy the second most common surgery for women of reproductive age. While it is estimated that fewer than one-third of hysterectomies in the United States today are performed using minimally invasive techniques, St. Helena Hospital Clearlake is committed to changing the standard of care by offering women less invasive options, including laparoscopic hysterectomy.

“With this minimally invasive procedure women no longer have to endure a long recovery, and in most cases there is less pain and significantly less scarring,” said Dr. Dhanda. “Patients are able to get back into their routines at home or work much sooner.” Dr. Dhanda, who has maintained a private gynecology practice in Lake County since 1990, is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. 

During a laparoscopic hysterectomy, a surgeon uses a thin, lighted telescope-like instrument called a laparoscope, attached to a video camera, along with small surgical instruments that are all inserted through three to four tiny incisions in the navel and abdomen. Using the instruments, the surgeon carefully separates the uterus from the cervix and removes it through one of the openings. Because this type of surgery does not require the surgeon to make a large abdominal incision, a woman will not have the same kind of visible scar typical with most traditional, “open” surgeries.

For more information about the procedure at St. Helena Hospital Clearlake, call Dr. Dhanda’s office at (707)-279-8733. 

About St. Helena Hospital Clearlake: St. Helena Hospital Clearlake is a 25-bed acute care Critical Access Hospital serving South Lake County. The hospital’s services include 24-hour emergency care, an Intensive Care Unit, women’s services, medical imaging, surgical services, cardiac services, home health care services, health education, outpatient rehabilitation services, a cardiopulmonary care center, pediatric services, and laboratory services. St. Helena Hospital Clearlake partners with St. Helena Hospital to offer a full spectrum of care to the South Lake County community. 

St. Helena Hospital Clearlake is part of Adventist Health, a not-for-profit, faith-based health system operating in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Founded on the Seventh-day Adventist heritage of Christian health care, Adventist Health is comprised of 19 hospitals with more than 2,800 beds, 18,000 employees, numerous clinics and outpatient facilities, 16 home care agencies and three joint-venture retirement centers