What to know before going under the morcellator
It is estimated that 25% of women have some kind of uterine fibroid or benign tumors in their uterus. The rate can go as high as 70-80% after age 50. While these are typically benign they do cause symptoms that can cause discomfort such as bleeding, heavy cramping etc. Around 650,000 women a year have surgical myomectomy or hysterectomy a year. Of those, approximately 60,000 will have a power morcellator used with their surgery.
With the recent recommendations of the FDA encouraging doctors to seriously weigh the risks and benefits of using the Morcellator device during hysterectomy it is important for patients to take an active role in their healthcare and ask their providers certain questions before going into surgery.
Why are you having a hysterectomy?
Since using a morcellator increases the chance of spreading undetected cancers one of the first things that should be asked is, what is the reason for the hysterectomy in the first place? One in 350 women will have unsuspected cancer or uterine sarcoma. If a hysterectomy is required because of uterine fibroids or cancer of any kind then a Morcellator is NOT recommended.
Why is the Morcellator the preferred method of your physician?
Morcellators are almost never indicated as necessary. They are simply another method to use to perform a hysterectomy and if your surgeon does not feel confident performing a different type of procedure you may want question why that is.
Can I choose not to have a Morcellator used during my surgery?
If you feel uncomfortable taking the risk that the morcellator provides you should talk to your provider about the option of NOT using it. If your doctor refuses to perform the surgery without it you should look into a second opinion.
What risk is acceptable to you?
It is a lot easier for others to take risks with your health when they aren’t the ones suffering the consequences. Talking about the risks and benefits will help to determine for yourself if YOU feel that the risk is acceptable. It is your health and you have to live with the consequences of the decisions that are made. Make sure that you are not only educated about the risks but are completely confident with them. If you underwent surgery that used a morcellator and had your cancer spread contact us today.