In late 1996 Mrs. Martin contacted our office and reported concern over the fact that her periods were occurring every 2 weeks. During the office visit, she stated that she was experiencing heavy bleeding with the passage of clots that lasted approximately 7 days, requiring the use of 10 or more pads per day. The problem was very upsetting to her and was interfering with daily life at home and at work.
Mrs. Blumenthal*, a 40-year-old G1P1, had young twins at home and was also a full-time student. She delivered her twins in 1992 by C-section after conceiving through IVF. The patient had long-standing endometriosis, treated previously by three abdominal procedures (one laparotomy and two laparoscopies).
More than 99 percent of fibroid tumors of the uterus are benign, and most require no treatment. However, if these growths get very large, they can become uncomfortable, enlarge the abdomen and bring on loner, heavier menstrual periods. Even some tiny fibroids can cause abnormal bleeding. Until recently, a woman with troublesome fibroids almost always ended up with a hysterectomy.
Hysterectomy continues to be a common gynecologic operation. Approximately 600,000 patients undergo surgical removal of the uterus annually at a considerable cost to payers, patients, and society at large. Currently most hysterectomies are via the abdominal or vaginal approach but fortunately for patients laparoscopic assisted procedures are becoming more popular. Many studies have shown the laparoscopic approach as safe, effective, and a less intrusive alternative to open surgery.
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