The laparoscopic power morcellator is a medical device that is used to grind tissues so they can easily be removed from the body. The device was lauded as revolutionary when it was first released due to its ability to allow once complicated surgeries to be done faster and less invasively than traditional methods of performing the procedures; however, data tend to point to an increased risk in women developing deadly forms of cancer when the device is used.
Hundreds of cases of morcellator cancer have been reported over the years. The claims are supported by evidence that shows dormant cancerous cells can be released into the body when the device is used to grind tissue. These cells can then metastasize in other parts of the body. Studies have shown 1 in 350 women are at an increased risk of developing cancer as a result of undergoing a procedure utilizing the device.
While these findings have prompted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—the federal agency charged with regulating the safety of medical devices in our country—to issue warnings against the use of the device, congress is calling for a further investigation. The Wall Street Journal reports 12 members of Congress have called on the U.S. Government Accountability Office to look into the safety of the device and the decisions the FDA made in regards to use of the device.
Protecting the public from the dangers of potentially faulty medical devices should be a top priority in the U.S. and our defective product lawyers at Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin are hopeful a closer examination will be made by the federal government into the use of the power morcellator.
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