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Is the use of a containment bag at minimally invasive hysterectomy or myomectomy effective at reducing tissue spillage?

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Small study from Brigham & Women’s Hospital looks hopeful



Tissue extraction during laparoscopic or robot-assisted laparoscopic gynecologic surgery raises safety concerns for dissemination of tissue during the open, or uncontained, electromechanical morcellation process. Researchers from Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, investigated whether contained tissue extraction using power morcellators entirely within a bag is safe and practical for preventing tissue spillage. Goggins and colleagues presented their findings in a poster at the 2015 Annual Clinical Meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in San Francisco, California.

A total of 76 women at 4 institutions underwent laparoscopic or robotic multiport surgery (42 hysterectomy; 34 myomectomy). The average (SD) age and body mass index of the women were 43.16 (8.53) years and 26.47 kg/m2 (5.93), respectively. After surgical dissection, each specimen was placed into a containment bag that also included blue dye. The bag was insufflated intracorporeally and electromechanical morcellation and extraction of tissue were performed. The bag was evaluated visually for dye leakage or tears before and after the procedure.

In one case, there was a tear in the bag before morcellation; no bag tears occurred during the morcellation process. Spillage of dye or tissue was noted in 7 cases, although containment bags were intact in each instance. One patient experienced intraoperative blood loss (3600 mL), and that procedure was converted to open radical hysterectomy. The most common pathologic finding was benign leiomyoma.

Goggins and colleagues concluded, “Contained tissue extraction using electromechanical morcellation and intracorporeally insufflated bags may provide a safe alternative to uncontained morcellation by decreasing the spread of tissue in the peritoneal cavity while allowing for the traditional benefits of laparoscopy.”

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