Why Are Power Morcellator Cases Being Filed?

by Terry Bryant

The vast majority of power morcellator cases are filed in the aftermath of a hysterectomy or myomectomy. Most women, up to 80 percent in fact, will eventually develop benign tumors known as fibroids, which develop on the uterus. Usually, these growths are harmless and cause no symptoms, but they can occasionally cause pain and bleeding. When they do, doctors will go in and remove them, and until recently, one of the most popular ways to do so was with power morcealltors. This technology, though, has been shown to exacerbate deadly conditions, like cancer.

These devices are simple, and consist of a long tube through which a small spinning blade and powerful vacuum rest. During operation, the tube is inserted through a small laparoscopic incision and directed to the treatment area. Once there, the blade minces up the troublesome tissue and the vacuum removes it from the body.

As many power morcellator cases assert, though, the device is not 100 percent effective, and one in 350 women are harboring a malignant tumor in the uterus that they are not aware of. Known as leiomyosarcomas, these tumors will quickly spread through the body if they are released into the abdominal cavity by the device, and this will make treating the disease much more difficult. In fact, the five year survival rate of leimyosarcoma drops dramatically if it is allowed to spread, so this technology often accelerates the onset of fatal symptoms associated with cancer.

Unsurprisingly, the devices have been pulled from shelves, but some doctors may still use them, given their popularity. Patients undergoing a hysterectomy or myomectomy will need to be mindful of what tools their doctor is using, and protect themselves from this dangerous technology.