Power Morcellators Complications Include Organ Damage and an Increased Risk for Fatal Cancer
Power morcellators are small surgical devices used to perform hysterectomies and to remove fibroids from the uterus. In select cases, doctors may also employ these tools during certain liver and spleen surgeries. Sadly, multiple brands of power morcellators have caused infection, bruising and damage to surrounding organs. Even more alarmingly, the devices can spread cancerous cells, often with serious or fatal consequences. If you or a loved one is a victim of power morcellators complications, our San Diego, CA, attorneys can help.
Power morcellators are to blame for spreading cancer in a number of women who underwent hysterectomy or myomectomy (fibroid removal) procedures.
What Are Power Morcellators?
Power morcellators are electronic surgical tools that doctors use to cut tissue into much smaller pieces. Then they can easily remove the tissue through tiny incisions during a minimally invasive surgery. Power morcellators are especially common in hysterectomies and myomectomies. A surgeon will insert the tool through a small opening in the abdomen. Then he or she can suction out the individual pieces of tissue.
The FDA has already released a warning against power morcellators stating that they are not safe for most women.
The FDA gave approval to the first power morcellators in 1991. Unfortunately, these devices were based on previous models. Therefore, they were allowed on the market through the expedited 510(k) process. Accordingly, they were not subject to clinical trials before they became available to the public.
Cancer and Power Morcellators
If doctors use power morcellators to shred cancerous tissue, the cancer cells can quickly spread throughout the body. Before undergoing this type of surgery, women are required to have cancer screenings. However, uterine sarcoma (leiomyosarcoma) is a rare type of cancer that is difficult or even impossible to catch in screenings. When women with this disease undergo a power morcellator surgery, the tool will spray bits of tissues through their abdomens. Once it spreads to the other organs, such as the lungs or liver, the cancer is classified as metastatic leiomyosarcoma. This very serious type of cancer has a five-year survival rate of just 4% to 16%.
Other Power Morcellator Complications
Along with the risk of fatal cancer, power morcellators can cause other problems. These include:
- Organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Problems with digestion
- Obstructed bowels
- Reoccurring fibroids
- Bleeding and oozing at the incision sites
- Abdominal pain
- Sore muscles
Exploring Your Legal Rights
The FDA has already released a warning against power morcellators stating that they are not safe for most women. Soon afterward, Johnson & Johnson issued a voluntary recall on their power morcellators, removing 75% of these tools from the market. Many hospitals have banned them outright. Some insurance companies refuse to pay for power morcellator surgeries. These actions have set a precedent for victims. In recent years, many women and their families have stepped forward, demanding just compensation for their medical complications. With such strong evidence against these tools, it is likely that pending cases will rule in favor of the victims.
If you or a loved one has suffered because of a power morcellator surgery, you may have the right to pursue legal compensation. Our attorneys are renowned for their expertise with defective medical device cases. We have participated in a number of class action and multidistrict litigation lawsuits. Our lead attorney has over 30 years of experience with such cases and is ranked among the top trial lawyers in the country. We offer free consultations and work on a strict contingency basis.
Contact San Diego Injury Lawyer
At San Diego Injury Lawyer, we are experts in defective medical device cases and class action lawsuits. We will fight tirelessly for your rights and to obtain the money you deserve for medical bills or funeral expenses. Contact our firm for a free consultation to learn more about the power morcellators lawsuit and to find out if you qualify.