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Despite the loss of human lives, the New England Journal of Medicine comes out in favor of morcellators

For decades, surgeons used power morcellators in hysterectomies and in myomectomies, a procedure to remove uterine fibroids. Unfortunately, for women with undiagnosed uterine cancer, power morcellation causes cancer to spread throughout the abdominal cavity. This can take a relatively treatable Stage 1 cancer and transform it into Stage 4 cancer within weeks.

Women with a rare type of uterine cancer, known as leiomyosarcoma, face particularly poor outcomes, with only 14% of women with Stage 4 leiomyosarcoma living five years or longer. Due to morcellation, hundreds of women with undiagnosed leiomyosarcoma and uterine cancer have died. The risks associated with morcellation are now well-known. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) placed a "black-box" warning on morecellators in October 2014.

Despite the evidence of the risks associated with morcellation, the New England Journal of Medicine recently published an article titled "N-of-1 Policymaking - Tragedy, Trade-offs and the Demise of Morcellation." This piece, authored by Lisa Rosenbaum, M.D., a cardiologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and a National Correspondent for the New England Journal of Medicine, claims that morcellation is an example of public tragedy unduly influencing the medical community.

Dr. Rosenbaum argues that the risks associated with morcellation are overstated. She takes issue with the FDA studies indicating that as many as 1 in 352 women who underwent power morcellation had undiagnosed uterine cancer, stating that the FDA. She cites another study that claims approximately 1 in 8,300 women who underwent morcellation had undiagnosed uterine cancer. Dr. Rosenbaum further discussed how surgical hysterectomies and myomectomies have risks as well, citing estimates that 1 in 1,000 to 1 in 2,500 of these surgeries end in death. She further discusses the risks involved with any surgical procedure, including infection, increased pain and other complications.

Dr. Rosenbaum states that "there may be greater population benefits and lesser risks from continuing than from discontinuing morcellator use." While there are trade-offs in any type of medical procedure, the fact remains that for women with undiagnosed uterine cancer, morcellation is very often a death sentence. Furthermore, as these women were unaware that they had cancer, they were unable to make an informed decision about their treatment. Any woman who knows that she has uterine cancer would not approve a procedure that would spread the cancer throughout her body.

Today dozens of families have brought claims against the manufacturers of morcellators. These claims are being heard in a federal courtroom in Kansas City, Kansas. If you or someone you love was injured by a power morcellator, the attorneys of Fay Law Group, P.A., are ready to take action. Call 800-522-2715 to set up a free consultation.

Source: N-of-1 Policymaking - Tragedy, Trade-offs and the Demise of Morcellation, March 10, 2016, New England Journal of Medicine, Lisa Rosenbaum, M.D.

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