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cancer spread 29 articles

Passive reporting of adverse events with power morcellators put women at risk for cancer spread

Doctors and hospitals failed to tell federal authorities that a medical device used in gynecological procedures could upstage deadly cancer, worsening women’s odds of survival, according to a new report issued by the Government Accountability Office (GAO). The device in question is called a power morcellator, a surgical tool fitted with a tube-like blade that shreds uterine fibroids or entire uteruses within the uterine cavity and removes the tissue through a small incision in the abdomen. The procedure was preferred for hysterectomies and myomectomies (uterine fibroid removal) over open surgeries because it offers less risk of infection and shorter recovery ... Read More

Power morcellator victim who shed light on cancer spread risk with device dies

Bonnie Davis was healthy and in shape in Feb. 1, 2012, when she underwent a hysterectomy to relieve uterine fibroid symptoms. Her doctor opted to use a less invasive surgical tool called a power morcellator, which was fitted with a tube-like blade that would mince her uterus within her body and extract the tissue through a small incision in her abdomen. The procedure was ideal, allowing Davis far less recovery time than if she had undergone open surgery. She was also at less risk for infection and scar tissue buildup. What doctors didn’t know – and couldn’t know until the ... Read More

Physician-advocates speak out about dangers of power morcellation

Husband-and-wife physicians Amy Reed and Hooman Noorchashm are taking the leadership of the American College of Obstetrics (ACOG) and other well-decorated gynecologists to task in their latest opinion piece published in Philly.com. The couple have been advocating for the ban of power morcellation for hysterectomies and myomectomies (uterine fibroid removal) because the devices can spread undiagnosed uterine cancer, worsening the odds of survival. Reed and Noorchashm are all too familiar with the issue. Reed underwent a hysterectomy during which a power morcellator was used. The device consists of a tube-like blade that shreds uterine growths or entire uteruses within the ... Read More

A timeline of the power morcellation controversy

In October 2013, Amy Reed, M.D., an anesthesiologist at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston, followed her doctor’s recommendation and underwent a procedure using a power morcellator to remove her uterus due to suspected uterine fibroids. The minimally invasive procedure, which involves shredded the entire uterus within the body and removing the tissue through a small incision in the abdomen, would leave less risk for infection and offer shorter recovery for the mother of six. But days after surgery, Reed learned that she had uterine leiomyoscarma, a rare type of uterine cancer difficult to diagnose until the tissue is removed from the ... Read More

Power morcellator victims fight for patient safety

“Congress and the American people need to know that our public safety laws mean something – and that hospitals and manufacturers are aware that complacency in protecting patients has legal consequences.” The statement was made in a Philadelphia Inquirer editorial written by husband and wife Drs. Amy Reed and Hooman Noorchashm. The couple has become patient advocates pressing lawmakers to enact stiffer rules governing medical devices in the name of patient safety. In 2013, at the age of 43, Reed, an anesthesiologist and mother of six, had a hysterectomy to resolve problems from what doctors assumed were benign uterine fibroids. ... Read More

Power morcellator malpractice suits against Brigham and Women’s Hospital allowed to proceed

Two medical malpractice lawsuits filed against Brigham & Women’s Hospital will be allowed to proceed after the Boston hospital chose not to contest plaintiffs’ offers of proof. The lawsuits are related to the gynecological medical device known as a power morcellator, the manufacturers of which face dozens of personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits. Power morcellators are surgical tools that are fitted with a long, tube-like blade that shreds uterine fibroids or entire uteruses within the body and removes the tissue through a small incision in the abdomen. The devices are preferred over open surgery for hysterectomies or myomectomies (uterine fibroid ... Read More

Congressman introduces bill requiring doctors to report adverse effects of medical devices

In 2013, at the age of 43, Amy Reed, an anesthesiologist and mother of six, had a hysterectomy to alleviate symptoms from what doctors presumed were benign uterine growths. Rather than open surgery, her doctors recommended a laparoscopic procedure using a power morcellator, a surgical tool fitted with a tube-like blade that shreds uterine growths or entire uteruses within the uterine cavity and removes the tissue through a small incision in the abdomen. The procedure would be less invasive, put her at less risk for infection, and offer shorter recovery. What her doctors didn’t know was that Reed had a ... Read More

Black women more likely to have uterine fibroids, uterine sarcoma

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that power morcellation, a surgical tool used to perform hysterectomies or uterine fibroid removals, should not be used on most women because it could spread undiagnosed uterine cancer and worsen the odds of survival. The Root reports that black women may be at greater risk for cancer spread from power morcellation. Limiting power morcellation for most women by the FDA was taken as a blow by some surgeons who saw the convenience of the procedures over open surgery. Power morcellation is less invasive so there is a lower risk for infection. The procedure ... Read More

Representative introduces bills to protect women from dangerous medical devices

A bill known as Ariel Grace’s Law, designed to help women who claim they were injured by the permanent birth control device Essure fight back against the manufacturer of the device, was introduced on the House floor this week. This happened just as a second bill, called the Medical Device Guardians Act, was filed, giving physicians a more effective way of reporting problems with medical devices to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Both bills were introduced by Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, who is helping raise awareness of the need for closer scrutiny of medical devices. He has taken up the fight for ... Read More

Rep. Fitzpatrick to announce medical device reform bills

This week, Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA) along with Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) will announce a package of bills aimed at strengthening the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) medical device review process and increasing the accountability for dangerous products. They will be joined by women and families affected by medical devices including the permanent birth control method Essure and the laparoscopic hysterectomy device power morcellator. Speakers will share the emotional effects they say they experienced as a result of these allegedly failed medical devices, and their fight for justice. Fitzpatrick has been the leading voice in Congress calling for medical device approval ... Read More