Frequently Asked Questions
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What is the Acessa Procedure?
The Acessa procedure involves creating just two 1 cm incisions in the abdomen, inserting a needle into the fibroid, and using radiofrequency energy (or heat) to destroy it – while leaving the uterus intact. The fibroid is then reabsorbed into the surrounding tissue.
What happens during the Acessa Procedure?
The Acessa Procedure involves four basic steps:
- Identify: A laparoscopic ultrasound is used to identify location and size of all fibroids present.
- Target: The handpiece tip is inserted using laparoscopic and ultrasound guidance. A proprietary mapping system helps to accurately target the center of the fibroids.
- Confirm: The electrode array is deployed. Laparoscopic and ultrasound guidance confirm that the electrodes remain within the fibroid.
- Treat: The appropriate duration of ablation is determined, the treatment is applied, and any bleeding is controlled as the handpiece is withdrawn. The fibroid is absorbed by the body over time.
How long does the Acessa Procedure take?
The surgery is an outpatient procedure, so you will be able to go home the same day. The length of surgery varies depending on the number and size of uterine fibroids that are treated. On average, the procedure takes 60-90 minutes.
Is general or local anesthesia used?
General anesthesia is used for the Acessa Procedure.
Is the Acessa Procedure painful?
The procedure is performed under general anesthesia so you will not feel pain during the procedure. Following the procedure you may experience mild abdominal pain for which your physician may prescribe medication.
Since this is surgery, how big will my incisions be?
The Acessa Procedure is a laparoscopic surgical procedure. Laparoscopic surgery is frequently called the “band aid” surgery. In most cases, there will be two incisions, both 1cm in length.
How safe is the Acessa Procedure?
The FDA has cleared the Acessa System for the treatment of uterine fibroids. The Acessa Procedure has been clinically proven to be very safe and effective for the treatment of uterine fibroids. In fact, in three separate clinical studies leading up to FDA clearance, the complication rates were extremely low. Your physician can explain the potential complications of the Acessa Procedure as well as those of other available fibroid therapies.
What type of recovery can I expect?
The Acessa Procedure is performed as outpatient surgery and patients usually go home the same day, once they have recovered from the anesthesia. Patients return to normal activity in days not weeks.
When can I expect to see results from the Acessa Procedure?
It varies person to person as to when results are seen, however symptomatic relief of pelvic pain and pressure is typically seen shortly after the procedure is performed. Heavy bleeding is noticeably improved within three to six months, sometimes as soon as the first menstrual period.
What is the chance I will need another procedure to treat fibroids?
Very few patients require further treatment following the Acessa Procedure. The cause of uterine fibroids is unknown,
however once a fibroid is destroyed it cannot grow back. The Acessa Procedure uses ultrasound to identify the fibroids for treatment. This means your surgeon will find most, if not all, of your fibroids and treat them during the procedure. In the largest clinical trial to date, the need for further treatment was less than 5% per year.
How happy are patients who have been treated with the Acessa Procedure?
Over 90% of patients receiving the Acessa Procedure were satisfied with the treatment and would recommend it to a friend. In addition, when Quality of Life scores were measured before the procedure and again at three months following the procedure, scores improved by over 100%. The improvements in Quality of Life were maintained for three years following the procedure.
How do I know if I’m a good candidate for the Acessa Procedure?
If you suffer from heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding, abdominal pain and pressure, frequent urination, and/or low energy due to anemia, you may have uterine fibroids. Uterine fibroids are very common. In fact, approximately 70% of women have fibroids by age 50. Your doctor can determine if you have uterine fibroids.
Please feel free to call us at email us if you have any other questions.or