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After Warning, Johnson & Johnson Postpones Sale of Device Used For Fibroid Surgery

Johnson & Johnson has temporarily suspended its international sale of its power morcellators following an April 17 advisory from the Food and Drug Administration warning that their use to remove fibroids from the uterus has a risk of worsening hidden cancer, according to Reuters. The company says that it will attempt to resume sale once their role in fibroid treatment is further investigated and understood by the medical community, Reuters reported. Laparoscopic power morcellation is a treatment used to treat fibroids, which are noncancerous growths on the uterus common during childbearing years, according to the Mayo Clinic. The procedure uses the power morcellators to break uterine tissue into smaller fragments so they can easily be removed through a minor incision in the stomach, Reuters reported. The device can also be used to remove the entire uterus in severe cases, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. The risk of inadvertently spreading cancer by means of this procedure has been recognized in the medical profession for some time, and the FDA estimated that 1 in 350 females in the Unites States who undergo surgery each year have a hidden form of cancer known as uterine sarcoma, the Star Tribune reported.

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