Power morcellation regarded as most dangerous medical procedures
In Davis v. Ethicon, Inc. et al, Case No. 2:2016-cv-00101, Dr. Amy Reed, 42, an anesthesiologist and mother of six, is currently battling for her life after a diagnosis of leiomyosarcoma, a ferocious uterine cancer that spread through her body. She learned of the cancer about a week after she underwent Laparoscopic Power Morcellation on her uterus.
Reed was dealing with severe bleeding during menstruation. Both Reed and her husband decided to limit the size of their family to six children, for which Reed had to undergo hysterectomy, a treatment for fibroids.
Later on, Reed interrogated about the traditional invasive surgery, wherein the uterus is removed in one piece. However, she was recommended laparoscopy, which is a minimal invasive procedure that would result in smaller incisions, faster healing and minimizing blood loss.
In reality, power morcellation treatment was used to section the uterus while it still remained in Reed’s abdomen and was finally removed in sections. Uterine cancer cells spread throughout Reed’s abdomen through use of the power morcellator. After developing the aggressive cancer, she started with standard and experimental treatments in order to cure the cancer and also wanted her cardiac surgeon husband to ban power morcellators.
Ovarian cancer is regarded as one of the greatest health concerns affecting women.
Moreover, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recommended not to use Laparoscopic Power Morcellation as certainly not the first option; but rather as an option of last resort. It also stated that laparoscopic power morcellation myomectomy and related procedures are now listed by many amongst the more dangerous medical procedures out there.
Statistically, the risk is upon one in every 10,000 women and the FDA also acknowledges that the spread of undetected sarcomas during hysterectomy or fibroid removal is more like one in 350.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) and the Government Accountability Office were investigating as to why the FDA took 20 years to warn about the risks.
Even the three women who steadfastly refused power morcellation treatment after reading about Reed’s plight, later on turned out to have sarcomas which were removed through traditional surgery.
In the meanwhile, it was reported that Johnson & Johnson has begun the process of settling power morcellation lawsuits.
Recently, in Davis v. Ethicon, Inc. et al, (Case No. 2:2016-cv-00101), Babette Davis, a plaintiff from Wisconsin, filed a power morcellation lawsuit on January 27, 2016 against Johnson & Johnson and Ethicon, amongst other defendants alleging that the Gynecare power morcellator which was manufactured by the Ethicon unit of Johnson & Johnson led to the uterine cancer throughout the plaintiff’s abdomen and pelvis.