Consumer Alert: FDA Warns Power Morcellators May Spread Cancer

FDA warns hysterectomy and fibroid patients of cancer risks from power morcellators, a tool used in laparoscopic and robotic procedures.

May 14, 2014

On April 17, 2014 the FDA cautioned that power morcellators, a type of surgical tool used in laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomies and fibroid removal procedures, may promote the spread of unsuspected uterine cancer. In response, Johnson & Johnson, the largest manufacturer of the devices, suspended worldwide sales of its laparoscopic power morcellators.

Laparoscopic power morcellation is one of several available treatments for fibroids. It is a procedure that uses a medical device to divide the uterine tissue into smaller pieces or fragments so it can be removed through a small incision in the abdomen. The FDA has determined that approximately 1 in 350 women who are undergoing hysterectomy or myomectomy for fibroids have an unsuspected type of uterine cancer called uterine sarcoma. If laparoscopic power morcellation is performed in these women, there is a risk that the procedure will spread the cancerous tissue within the abdomen and pelvis, significantly worsening the patient’s likelihood of long-term survival. The FDA is now urging doctors to avoid using power morcellators during uterine fibroid treatments.

Robins Kaplan Miller & Ciresi L.L.P is interested in speaking with individuals who have undergone a power morcellation hysterectomy or fibroid removal procedure and were then diagnosed with uterine cancer, endometrial cancer, leiomyosarcoma, uterine sarcoma, or another cancer that has spread throughout the body.

Robins Kaplan Miller & Ciresi L.L.P is experienced with medical device suits and is dedicated to giving our clients a voice against large companies. We welcome calls from referring attorneys or potential clients. Contact us at 1-800-553-9910 or at 1-612-349-8500 or by clicking contact us.


[2]Wall Street Journal, Johnson & Johnson Suspends Sale of Device Used in Fibroid Surgery, April 29, 2014,

The articles on our website include some of the publications and papers authored by our attorneys, both before and after they joined our firm. The content of these articles should not be taken as legal advice. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or official position of Robins Kaplan LLP.


Tara D. Sutton


Chair, National Mass Tort Group

Megan McKenzie

Back to Top