Uterine fibroids are benign (non-cancerous) tumors that grow underneath the uterine lining, inside the uterine wall or outside the uterus. Fibroids are very common in women during their reproductive years.
Many women don’t feel any symptoms with uterine tumors or fibroids. But for others, these fibroids can cause excessive menstrual bleeding (also called menorrhagia), abnormal periods, uterine bleeding, pain, discomfort, frequent urination and infertility. The diagram above depicts different types of fibroids that can occur.
Surgery for uterine tumors can involve removing the entire uterus – known as a hysterectomy. While hysterectomy is a proven way to get rid of fibroids, it may not be the best treatment for every woman.
If you want to keep your uterus but not necessarily get pregnant in the future, there are a number of prescription drug treatments that may help to stop fibroid growth or even shrink them.
If you hope to later become pregnant, you may want to consider alternatives to hysterectomy like myomectomy. During myomectomy, surgeons remove the fibroids but not your uterus.
All surgery presents risk, including da Vinci Surgery. Results, including cosmetic results, may vary. Serious complications may occur in any surgery, up to and including death. Examples of serious and life-threatening complications, which may require hospitalization, include injury to tissues or organs; bleeding; infection, and internal scarring that can cause long-lasting dysfunction or pain. Temporary pain or nerve injury has been linked to the inverted position often used during abdominal and pelvic surgery. Patients should understand that risks of surgery include potential for human error and potential for equipment failure. Risk specific to minimally invasive surgery may include: a longer operative time; the need to convert the procedure to an open approach; or the need for additional or larger incision sites. Converting the procedure to open could mean a longer operative time, long time under anesthesia, and could lead to increased complications. Research suggests that there may be an increased risk of incision-site hernia with single-incision surgery. Patients who bleed easily, have abnormal blood clotting, are pregnant or morbidly obese are typically not candidates for minimally invasive surgery, including da Vinci Surgery. Other surgical approaches are available. Patients should review the risks associated with all surgical approaches. They should talk to their doctors about their surgical experience and to decide if da Vinci is right for them. For more complete information on surgical risks, safety and indications for use, please refer to
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