What is a myomectomy?

A myomectomy is a gynecologic surgical procedure which is used to remove uterine fibroids. Uterine fibroids are noncancerous growths that can grow in the uterus

During a myomectomy, your surgeon will take out troublesome fibroids and reconstruct the uterus. Most women who undergo myomectomy experience symptom relief after the procedure.

Who is a candidate for a myomectomy

You may be a candidate for a myomectomy if your fibroids are causing symptoms that are interfering with your day-to-day life.

A myomectomy is preferable to a hysterectomy in the following cases:

  • You would like to have children
  • Your fibroids are suspected to be causing infertility
  • You would like to keep your uterus

Risks of a myomectomy

Although myomectomy is generally safe, it is a surgical procedure and is associated with risks such as:

  • Damage to the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries, bladder or bowel tissue
  • Pelvic scarring that leads to pain or infertility
  • Scarring that could rupture during a pregnancy or childbirth
  • Infection in the uterus, ovaries or fallopian tubes
  • Severe bleeding that cannot be controlled

Your doctor will outline the benefits and risks of a myomectomy before scheduling your procedure.

What to expect during a myomectomy

A myomectomy can be performed in three different ways, depending upon the location, size, and number of fibroids you have.

Abdominal myomectomy

An abdominal myomectomy is an open surgical procedure that involves making a large incision in the abdominal wall. Your Mercy Health surgeon will be able to clearly see your pelvic organs and remove fibroid growths through the incision. An abdominal myomectomy is most appropriate for patients who have large fibroids, more than two fibroids or fibroids that are embedded in the uterine wall.

Laparoscopic myomectomy

Laparoscopic myomectomy is performed through smaller incisions in the abdomen where your surgeon will insert small surgical instruments to reach and remove your fibroids. A laparoscopic myomectomy is most appropriate for patients who have smaller growths (less than 2 inches in diameter) and only have one or two fibroids.

Hysteroscopic myomectomy

A hysteroscopy myomectomy is an outpatient procedure where your doctor can remove fibroids that have developed on the uterine lining. During the procedure, your surgeon will insert an instrument called a hysteroscope through the vagina into the uterus and will remove any troublesome fibroids. A hysteroscopy is only used when fibroids are located on the inner lining of the uterus.

Recovery from a myomectomy

Recover after a myomectomy varies based on the type of surgery you had. If you have an abdominal myomectomy, you will need to spend one to three days in the hospital, and total recovery is between four to six weeks. If you have a laparoscopic myomectomy, you may be able to go home that day or the next day and only need one to two weeks to recover. If your doctor recommends you undergo a hysteroscopy, you will not need to stay in the hospital overnight, and the total recovery period will be between three and 14 days.

Although most patients do not experience fibroid regrowth after a myomectomy, some patients may experience recurrent uterine fibroids.

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