What are the steps to fibroid removal with Acessa?
Uterine fibroids can cause a lot of discomfort, including pelvic pain, frequent urination and even heavy menstruation. For some women, continuous problems with fibroids can mean having to undergo major, invasive inpatient fibroid surgery. Luckily there is hope. With the minimally-invasive Acessa procedure a hysterectomy is rarely necessary. This outpatient fibroid surgery is a laparoscopic procedure that rapidly reduces symptoms and has a fast recovery time.
What is the Acessa Procedure?
This same-day, outpatient fibroid surgery does not involve removing the uterus. The tip of a disposable electrosurgical handpiece is inserted into the fibroid and delivers energy to the fibroid, destroying it and causing it to shrink or disappear completely. The procedure requires general anesthesia and may last a couple of hours, depending on the size and the number of fibroids in the uterus.
Acessa Procedure Steps:
- Consult with a Physician — If you think you may be suffering from uterine fibroids, the first step would be consulting with a physician to assess the situation. In some cases, inpatient fibroid removal surgery may be inevitable, but for most women, the Acessa procedure is a safe option. Your physician will be able to explain all the different fibroid treatments, their risks and benefits. Once both of you are convinced that the Acessa procedure is the best for your situation, an appointment can be made.
- Incisions — Two small incisions less than a 1/4 of an inch in size are made.
- Laparoscopic Ultrasound — During the procedure, the first step is to map the uterus and determine the exact location and size of each fibroid. Using a laparoscopic ultrasound probe, the surgeon can “see” fibroids as tiny as 2mm in diameter.
- Inserting the Hand Piece into the Fibroid — With the help of ultrasound, the tip of the hand piece is inserted into the fibroid tissue.
- Hand Piece Electrode Deployment — With the tip still inside the fibroid, an electrode array may be opened according to the size of the fibroid. The surgeon ensures that the electrodes stay inside the fibroid through ultrasound and laparoscopic evaluation.
- Ablation — Treatment is applied for exactly the right amount of time for each fibroid before the hand piece is withdrawn.
Safety and Recovery
Clinical trials have been done and led to the Acessa hand piece being FDA cleared. In three, separate studies, women who had the procedure had very low complication rates and the need for further treatment was calculated on average at less than 4 percent per year. It was evident that this is a very safe procedure with a short recovery time. Unlike inpatient fibroid removal surgery, patients who opted for the Acessa procedure could go home the same day after recovering from the anesthesia. After approximately four days, most patients are fit for work. Symptoms such as heavy bleeding often reduce within the first three to six months or even during the first menstrual period after the procedure. It is not hard to see why so many physicians recommend Acessa to their patients.