More medical centers say they will suspend use of power morcellators

| April 24, 2014

Pathologists everywhere are rejoicing over this news — not for the risk of spreading hidden cancers but the FDA affirming what many pathologists have been concerned about for years since this procedure became popular.  Intact surgical specimens are better than fragments.

The Wall Street Journal (4/24, Subscription Publication) reported two major medical centers have joined the list of institutions that have suspended the use of power morcellators for some hysterectomies in the wake of the FDA warning last week that the procedure could raise the risk of accidentally spreading cancer. The two institutions are Cleveland Clinic and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, according to the paper.

Company cuts robotic surgery projections following FDA warning. The Wall Street Journal (4/23, Walker, Kamp) reported that Intuitive Surgical Inc. cut the forecast of procedures planned with its robotic da Vinci surgery system in the wake of recent FDA warning that power morcellators could raise the risk of spreading cancer. Partly due to the warning, the company disclosed it now expects the number of those procedures to increase 2 percent to 8 percent 2014, compared with its earlier view of 9 percent to 12 percent rise. The FDA last week warned that power morcellators used for removing uterine growths called fibroids may accidentally help spread hidden cancer.

Category: General Healthcare News

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