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For some, an effective alternative to hysterectomy.

More than half of the 650,000 hysterectomies performed each year on American women are for abnormal uterine bleeding. The controversy over hysterectomy versus other methods of treating various uterine diseases goes on (see our February issue). However, the results of a new British study may result in a dramatic decrease in the number of hysterectomies being done to treat excessive and painful uterine bleeding.

The British journal Lancet recently reported on a new technique that preserves the uterus and cuts recovery time to less than two weeks, compared with the 6-to-12 week recovery period after hysterectomy. An instrument with a wire loop at its end is inserted into the uterus through the cervix, and the lining of the uterus that produces the bleeding (the endometrium) is removed with the heated loop. Both doctor and patient can view the entire procedure on a television screen by means of a tiny camera built into the tip of the instrument.

The technique was used on 234 British women, averaging 42 years of age, who were followed for up to 2 1/2 years after the procedure. More than 90 percent of them reported pain-free, lighter menstrual cycles, making this one of the largest studies to date demonstrating the use of the new procedure as a safe, effective alternative to hysterectomy.
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Title Annotation:new treatment for excessive uterine bleeding removes lining of uterus with heated loop
Publication:Medical Update
Date:Jul 1, 1991
Words:218
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