Morcellators and the Spread of Cancer: What You Should Know

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Learning that you have a severe illness can turn your entire life upside down. Between the doctors’ appointments, medications and anxiety of dealing with a potentially life-threatening health issue, there is a lot you will need to deal with. The last thing you need is for your health to get even worse thanks to a bad medical decision.

Unfortunately, this is exactly what has happened to many women who have undergone specific surgical operations. According to various reports in recent years, including this one in The Wall Street Journal, the use of a tool called a morcellator has contributed to the spread of cancer in patients.

A morcellator is a surgical tool that has been widely used during minimally invasive operations, including hysterectomies and fibroid surgeries. The tool chops up the fibroids or other tissue so that a surgeon can more easily remove it without having to make a larger incision across a patient’s body.

However, when the tissue is chopped up for removal, there is a very real risk that any undetected cancerous cells in the tissue can spread to other organs. This is why the FDA, the FBI and many hospitals in New York and across the country are urging doctors not to use morcellators in cases where there is any risk of spreading cancer.

Some of these tools have been recalled from the market; some of the tools have been repackaged with the strongest warnings possible. However, the fact remains that morcellators are still used and still putting patients in danger.

You will likely have little or no information on the specific tools a surgeon might use during an operation. You can do some research of your own and ask plenty of questions, but ultimately, it will be your surgical team making decisions on which tools to use and which procedures may be safest.

Should a doctor, nurse or hospital take unnecessary risks or opt to use unsafe medical devices during an operation, the negligent party can and should be held accountable for any damages that result from that type of bad decision. If you have undergone an operation that resulted in the spread of cancer and you believe a morcellator may be involved, it can be critical that you consult an attorney familiar with medical malpractice claims involving dangerous medical devices.

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