The product liability lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are reviewing potential lawsuits for women throughout the United States who have been diagnosed with the spread of aggressive cancer following a laparoscopic hysterectomy or uterine fibroid removal surgery where a device known as a power morcellator was used.
Morcellation involves the cutting of tissue into small pieces that allow the doctors to remove the uterus or uterine fibroids through a small incision.
Lawyers are Reviewing Cases for Morcellators Used in Laparoscopic Uterine Fibroid Surgery
Many women receive this minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery, since it carries a shorter recovery time and reduced risk of infection or other complications. However, it has recently been discovered that the devices may cause the spread of cancerous tissue and lead to serious and life-threatening cancers.
Power morcellators have been used in an estimated 50,000 laparoscopic hysterectomies and myomectomies each year, which may have caused women to be diagnosed with cancer in the uterus, pelvis and abdomen, including aggressive forms of uterine sarcoma and leiomyosarcoma (LMS).
Through a hysterectomy morcellation lawsuit, women may be entitled to financial compensation as a result of the failure of the manufacturers of these devices to warn about the health risks linked to the procedures.
Power Morcellator Cancer Risk
As concerns have mounted over the past year about the spread of cancer following morcellation hysterecomy procedures, the FDA launched an investigation in December 2013. This week, the agency issued a safety communication urging doctors not to use laparoscopic power morcellation during hysterectomies and myomectomies for uterine fibroid removal.
The FDA estimates that about one out of every 352 women who undergo a hysterectomy or uterine fibroid surgery involving power morcellation have unsuspected uterine sarcoma, and about one out of every 498 women have leiomyoscarcoma (LMS). Since there is no effective way to detect the cancerous tissue before the procedure, this may cause many women to have cancer cells spread during the surgery.
According to the FDA statement issued on April 17:
Before the FDA’s warning, numerous critics complained that the medical community and women were not being informed about the cancer risks of power morcellators. They also warned that doctors were not being advised to use a surgical bag available to contain tissue from power morcellation that could potentially help prevent the spread of cancerous cells, and doctors who did attempt to use the bags said working with them was difficult, resulting in many doctors who did not know the risks and need for the bags not using them.
Power morcellators have been in use since the first one was introduced in 1993. Manufacturers have had more than 20 years to adequately research the risks to women that can be caused by these medical devices, not including research that should have been done before the first one was ever placed on the market.
As the FDA pointed out in their statement this week, there are a number of treatment alternatives available for symptomatic uterine fibroids, including:
- Traditional surgical hysterectomy performed vaginally or abdominally
- Laparoscopic hysterectomy or myomectomy that does not involve use of morcellation
- Catheter-based blocking of the uterine artery
- High-intensity focused ultrasound
- Drug therapy
Laparoscopic Hysterectomy Cancer Lawyers
The NIH estimates that uterine fibroid removal is a $2.1 billion a year industry and that most women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with uterine fibroids at some point in their lives.
By promoting the use of power morcellation without adequately researching the potential risks or providing warnings for consumers and the medical community, it appears that manufacturers placed their desire for profits before women’s health and safety.
The hysterectomy morcellation lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are reviewing potential lawsuits for women throughout the United States who have been diagnosed with aggressive uterine cancer that may have been caused by the use of this device during their procedure. All cases are handled by our law firm under a contingency fee agreement, which means that there are no out-of-pocket expenses to hire our law firm and we receive no attorney fees unless a recovery is obtained through the lawsuit or case.
If you, a friend or family member experienced cancer or death that may have been caused by a power morcellator during a hysterectomy or uterine fibroid removal surgery, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.