The port with multiple channels allowed the operation's success
Aberdeen Royal Infirmary has become the first in Europe to remove a spleen using a "virtually scarless" single keyhole technique, it has been claimed.
The single incision laparoscopic surgery (Sils) was performed by Prof Zyg Krukowski and Irfan Ahmed.
They used one 15mm incision just below the left rib cage.
Mr Ahmed said: "Removing a spleen using this novel technique is a more challenging operation because of its unique location in the body."
The technique has already been successfully used in Aberdeen for gall bladder, appendix and hernia operations, since October last year.
The latest technique involves making a single incision and inserting a port with multiple channels so that instruments - including a miniature camera - can be fed through to the site of the operation, all through the one access point.
Prof Krukowski said: "After freeing the spleen it was placed in special bag, and removed through the port site.
"The procedure took a little over one hour which is similar to our routine laparoscopic approach.
"The patient was able to go home 24 hours after the surgery."
Mr Ahmed said: "Even keyhole surgery, which involves several incisions, has not been used routinely in some hospitals for removing a spleen.
"In Aberdeen, keyhole spleen removal has been in routine practice for more than 15 years.
"Now we are pleased to take it a step further and remove it through a single keyhole."