Conditions & Treatments


Splenectomy is the surgical removal of the spleen. The spleen is an organ in the upper left part of the abdomen. It is beneath the ribs and behind the stomach. The spleen filters blood to remove bacteria, parasites, and other organisms that can cause infection. It also removes old and damaged blood cells.

Reasons for Procedure:

  • Trauma to the spleen
  • Splenic rupture due to tumor, infection, inflammatory condition or medicines
  • Enlargement of the spleen
  • Certain blood disorders including sickle cell disease and spherocytosis
  • Myelofibrosis (abnormal formation of the fibrous tissue in the bone marrow)
  • Damage to blood vessels in the spleen
  • Leukemia or lymphoma
  • Diseased spleen 
  • Tumor or abscess in the spleen
  • Liver disease


The spleen can be removed through laparoscopic surgery or rarely through an open incision.

Four small incisions will be made in the abdomen. Special tools will be inserted through these incisions. Blood vessels to the spleen will be divided and ligated. The spleen will then be rotated and removed. If the spleen has been ruptured, the abdomen is checked for any other injured organs or blood vessels. If needed, further surgery may be done at this time. The incisions will be closed with stitches and covered with surgical tape.

The removed spleen is sent to the lab for testing.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Willis Knighton Health