Fibroids, also called myomas or uterine leiomyomas, are the most common gynecological abnormalities. They are uterine growths that can cause significant discomfort and heavy bleeding both during and between periods. They might develop at any time, from peak childbearing years to middle age. The symptoms can be severe enough to hinder daily activities, and they are also a very common cause of fertility challenges. One of the most effective treatments for bothersome fibroids is a myomectomy.
Myomectomy is a surgical procedure used in the removal of fibroid growths. It is typically a preferred procedure by both physicians and patients because it repairs the uterus, preserving the possibility of conception.
When is Myomectomy Used?
Although some women with fibroids elect not to have them immediately removed because they are small and do not cause symptoms, a myomectomy might be performed on patients under the following circumstances:
- When a patient wants to become pregnant in the future
- When fibroids are actively inhibiting pregnancy
- When symptoms cause significant discomfort and disruption of normal activities
There are three categories of myomectomy: hysteroscopic, laparoscopic, and open myomectomy.
This is the least invasive form of myomectomy. It is generally performed on patients with minor growths that are located in the cavity of the uterus.
The hysteroscope is inserted through the vagina and into the uterus. The interior is visualized on a monitor using the camera located on the tip of the instrument. The fibroids are then excised and extracted through the vagina. The total recovery time is minimal – generally one or two days. The patient is only required to remain in the medical facility for an hour after the procedure for monitoring.
If fibroid growths are believed to be in locations that cannot be accessed through a hysteroscopic myomectomy, then a laparoscopic myomectomy might be performed.
Though this is also a minimally invasive form of myomectomy, laparoscopic myomectomy does require incisions in the abdomen. This is performed so that the laparoscopic device can be inserted.
The device has a light and a camera at the tip to display the reproductive tract on a monitor. This gives the surgeon a detailed view of the exterior of the uterus. Once the location of the fibroids has been determined, the surgeon will create additional incisions so that surgical tools can be easily inserted. The fibroids are then removed through those additional incisions.
Laparoscopic myomectomy leaves minimal scarring and has a very low risk of complications. A 24-hour hospital stay is typically required.
When fibroid growths have become too large to be removed using hysteroscopic or laparoscopic approaches, an open myomectomy must be performed. This is considered a serious surgical procedure requiring a low-transverse incision, commonly known as a “bikini cut,” through which the fibroids are withdrawn. The procedure is performed under general anesthetic and requires a hospital stay of approximately two days. It might be recommended that subsequent pregnancies be delivered by planned cesarean section, depending upon how fragile the uterine wall has become as a result.
Discovering abnormal, symptomatic growths is always a frightening prospect. At PRC, we are committed to providing the support and dedicated pre-and post-operative care you need to recover quickly and improve your chances of conception.
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