It is estimated that at least one in four women have uterine fibroids, non-cancerous tumors growing within the uterus. The location of these fibroids may be beneath the lining of the uterine cavity, entirely within the muscle layer or beneath the outer covering of the uterus. Most women are not aware of these fibroids, while some suffer from heavy menstrual bleeding, pressure related to the size and location of the fibroids, pain, miscarriage and infertility.
A hysterectomy is often the answer to symptomatic uterine fibroids for some women but for women who wish to become pregnant, health care providers may suggest a procedure called a myomectomy. The traditional way to perform a myomectomy is by open surgery, through a large cut in the abdomen. After removing the fibroid(s), the surgeon repairs the uterine wall to minimize bleeding, infection and scarring.
Myomectomies can also be performed laparoscopically, with ½-inch cuts, but this approach can be challenging for the surgeon. The procedure may take longer than open surgery, and up to one in four laparoscopic procedures are converted during surgery to an open cut on the stomach.
The third option, which is available at Women & Infants, is robot-assisted myomectomy using the da Vinci® Surgical System.
The robotic myomectomy combines the best of open and laparoscopic surgery.
The da Vinci system allows the surgeon to remove your uterine fibroids through small cuts on your stomach, no matter how large the fibroids are or where they are located in your uterus. The robot’s level of precision allows your surgeon to reconstruct the uterine wall, which helps prevent possible uterine tearing during future pregnancies.
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