CIGC patient Michelle had been struggling with rectal bleeding with her cycle before coming to see us. Her symptoms were getting progressively worse for nearly 3 years. She saw a general practitioner, a gastroenterologist and an OB/GYN and none of them was able to recognize the signs of endometriosis. They dismissed her symptoms and could not provide treatment. Michelle was in great pain, feeling hopeless and desperate.
It is estimated that as many as 500,000 hysterectomies will be performed in 2016. Sadly many of them will be executed with unnecessary invasive, higher risk surgical approach: invasive open hysterectomy, blind vaginal hysterectomy, or robotic hysterectomy. It is important that women look into all treatment options and know the risks associated with each procedure.
Open GYN surgery means a large incision and up to 8 weeks recovery time. Open procedures have higher risk of infection and have a higher chance of pelvic adhesions forming due to scarring. There are safer, less invasive procedures for almost all patients and any size uterus, resulting in much faster recovery and less post-operative pain.
Vaginal GYN surgery is a blind procedure. Since there is no line of sight within the pelvis, this approach can cause injuries to surrounding structures. It is also very limited in what can be treated (moderate to large uteri can be difficult to remove). The blind approach also accounts for the inability to see and treat other pelvic problems or to assess for bleeding or complications after surgery.
Robotic GYN surgery is performed with a surgeon sitting at a control panel, away from the patient. The robotic approach has an increased size and number of incisions vs other laparoscopic procedures and accounts for increased complication rates, more pain and longer recovery. The cost of robotic GYN surgery is significantly higher cost, as compared to conventional laparoscopy.
A recent article published in the Journal of Gynecologic Surgery on November 2015 reports that over a 10-year period, a total of 455 injuries and 177 malfunctions from robotic GYN surgery have been reported. The most common gynecologic procedure, hysterectomy, has lead to both injuries and death.
When you are ready to discuss minimally invasive GYN surgery with a trained laparoscopic surgeon, call 888-SURGERY or contact us online. Don’t hesitate to ask for a second opinion if you were recommended open or robotic surgery. There are better, less invasive options to consider.