Thursday, April 24, 2014

FDA Warns of Cancer Risk with Laparoscopic Device

When I was worried about whether to risk Tamoxifen, a sweet social worker who has taken it, emailed me some comfort.  She only mentioned a couple of serious possible side effects.  One was uterine cancer. She made light of it, saying one would just have a hysterectomy.  I tried to go along with the downplaying.

Then I read about Dr. Amy Reed, whose doctor husband was in conflict with Brigham and Women's Hospital, insisting that laparoscopic power morcellation in her hysterectomy spread an undiagnosed cancer throughout her abdominal cavity. The doctor and her husband have been fighting to get the procedure  publicized and stopped.

Why do I care?  Because the procedure is in use, and the FDA cares.    According to this April 17 medpage article, doctors don't always mention this potential danger to their patients.   Maybe they don't even discuss how they're going to do the hysterectomy.

Now, in the back of my mind with fear of uterine cancer, I have to remember  what kind of hysterectomy.

What you can do is, if you like, read the story, in USA Today or medpage, then put a note with  your pills.    Put it in your medical proxy directions.  Put it in your wallet.  And tell your GYN what is not permissible.

Update:  See my somewhat more polite comment on medpage under the title article.

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