Laparoscopy is a very useful technique for the investigation and treatment of many gynaecological problems. It is an operative procedure undertaken with a general anaesthetic (you are asleep). Many more simple procedures are performed as a day surgery procedure, so you are in and out the same day. For more major surgery, such as a hysterectomy, you would normally expect to stay in hospital for a few more days.
It involves a small incision in your belly button, with one, two, or rarely three, other small incisions on your tummy. Your tummy is inflated with gas, in order to see what I'm doing and to keep other bits and pieces out of the way.
One of the important risks of laparoscopy is damage to these other bits and pieces, such as the bladder, bowel, the tubes from the kidneys to the bladder, and major vessels. This doesn't happen very often, about 1 in 1000 cases, but may require further surgery to be performed. The risk increases with more difficult surgery, and these risks will be explained in detail to you.
You'd usually need to take at least two days off work afterwards, and possibly a week. You'll likely be a little sore for a few weeks.