ROYAL OAK (WWJ) — Surgeons at the Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak are using a new, Food and Drug Administration-approved device to treat patients with uterine fibroids.

Beaumont gynecologists Jay Fisher, M.D., Steven Dean, M.D. and David Brinton, M.D. are among nine surgeons in Michigan trained to perform this alternative to hysterectomy, the removal of the uterus. Beaumont is one of 15 U.S. health systems with surgeons performing this procedure.

The laporoscopic treatment uses a high-tech needle to deliver radio-frequency energy to the tissue though a handheld device. The handpiece sends a controlled current through the tissue to destroy it with high heat. The ablation procedure is done in an outpatient setting for women with symptoms from uterine fibroids such as heavy or prolonged menstrual periods; pelvic pain; frequent urination; pain during intercourse; and/or low back pain.

“The treatment allows us to target only the fibroids while preserving normal function of the uterus,” Dean said.

Uterine fibroids develop in the uterus; they are firm, compact tumors that are made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue that range from the size of a pea to the size of a grapefruit or larger. Fibroids are the most frequently seen tumors of the female reproductive system and are a common condition for women in the United States. Research suggests that 20 to 70 percent of women have uterine fibroids by age 50. Those with uterine fibroids may have a firm mass which can often be felt by a physician during a gynecologic exam.

“This procedure to ablate uterine fibroids can offer patients tremendous benefits,” said Fisher, who is director of the Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery. “With two tiny incisions, we can remove fibroids while preserving a healthy uterus and often eliminate the need for a hysterectomy. Because this is a minimally invasive treatment, women are left virtually scarless and are likely to return home the same day as the procedure.”

The Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery is located in suite 605 of the Medical Office Building at Beaumont, Royal Oak. It is open Wednesdays from 1 to 5 p.m.

Appointments can be made through the center by calling 248-551-3575.

Beaumont’s Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery offers minimally invasive surgical options for women who have gynecologic conditions, including: uterine fibroids or tumors, ovarian cysts, heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, urinary incontinency and pelvic floor relaxation. The center’s staff includes five minimally invasive gynecology surgery specialists and a nurse navigator who assists patients with scheduling, testing, follow-up care and office procedures. The Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery also serves as a teaching site for other Beaumont surgeons to learn how to perform minimally invasive and robotic surgery.

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