What is a Morcellator?
A morcellator is a tool or instrument used during surgery and for decades, it has been frequently used in gynecologic surgery, and more recently, in kidney and spleen surgeries across genders. In the 1990’s, the first electric morcellator was introduced and since then, they have been used in tens of thousands of surgeries for hysterectomies and myomectomies.
When a woman has a hysterectomy involving a laparoscopic procedure (minimally invasive surgeries using a tiny camera and not requiring a surgeon to insert their hands), then a morcellator is often used in order to shred the uterus into smaller pieces which can be removed. In the case of a myomectomy, the same device is used to cut and remove fibroids from uterine tissue.
These electric morcellators became popular because they only required a small incision and therefore, is less invasive to the patient and requires less time to recuperate from surgery. These morcellators essentially dice up bulky material within the abdomen allowing it to be removed through the small incision in a relatively easy and non-invasive way.
While the prospect of faster recovery and minimally invasive surgery all sounds well and good, there have been a number of ongoing complications related to the use of this device. Unfortunately, many women who have had hysterectomies or myomectomies often aren’t aware that a morcellator was used during surgery, nor were they made aware of the potential complications.
In late 2017, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released an updated assessment on laparoscopic power morcellators which discouraged their future use as they may increase the risk of spreading an unsuspected cancer throughout the uterus and abdomen. An estimated 1 in 350 patients have had an unsuspected sarcoma at the time of their morcellator procedure, and in these cases, it can lead to a rapid dispersal of the cancer cells throughout the body. What could have been an easily controllable Stage 1 cancer has all the sudden evolved into a widespread and devastating Stage IV cancer with few options for treatment and recovery.
Even if the cells are benign, it can still result in tumor formations throughout the body which can be painful and cause a number of other complications, often necessitating further medical treatment to rid the body of these tumors and which leads to additional suffering and increasing medical expenses.
Being diagnosed with cancer is always a devastating blow but finding out that it may have been exacerbated by a surgical procedure only makes it more devastating. No one should have to undergo a medical procedure that can result in a drastically shortened life-span or quality of life. While some manufacturers have removed these devices from the market, that is hardly any consolation to the many who are now facing a difficult battle with cancer, or for those who have already lost the fight.
The vast majority of these women were not made aware of the risks they were facing by undergoing surgery with a morcellator.
If you or a loved one is fighting cancer that was spread following the use of surgery with a morcellator, then you have a right to seek justice and may be entitled to financial compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and more. This is why it is important that you speak to an experienced medical malpractice attorney who specializes in defective medical products. Fears Nachawati is one of the leading medical malpractice attorneys in Texas, and we are prepared to fight on your behalf if you’ve undergone surgery with a morcellator and suffered the serious consequences as a result.
Having the right legal team on your side during this emotionally difficult and challenging time can mean all the difference, and we will help ensure you receive the compensation that you are entitled to as a result of this dangerous procedure.
For your free, no obligation legal consultation, please call (866) 705-7584, or visit the offices of Fears Nachawati located throughout the great state of Texas, including in Houston, Dallas, Austin, Fort Worth, and San Antonio.