Friday, July 27, 2007

5 Surgeries You Really Don't Want to Have

CNN has a very interesting piece and what surgeries to avoid and why and what to do instead of going under the knife -- here the 5 surgeries you want to avoid and link to the rest of the article:

- Hysterectomy
- Episiotomy
- Angioplasty
- Heartburn surgery
- Lower back surgery

To read on, click here.


Anonymous said...

What about cesarean-section? According to the World Health Organization and the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN), half of all cesareans are unnecessary. In the U.S., the c-section rate keeps going up without any improvement in maternal and infant health.

Ciarin said...

Good point but I believe the c/s rate is conrtibutable to some extent to the litigious society that we practice within. Our healthcare system is all about CYA or lose it - defensive medicine.

Anonymous said...

Can you put a price on pain? I disagree with the opinion on lower back surgery. If you have, for example, a compressed or fractured disk in your spine, any action causes pain. If you can relieve that pain by having a very minor surgery, why wouldn't you?

Anonymous said...

This article tells only about 20% of the story when it comes to hysterectomy. I don't disagree that this surgery may be over-performed and that surgeons who are removing ovaries should consider leaving them depending on the age/history of the patient. But to so cavalierly suggest the women seek alternatives is just plain irresponsible journalism. I underwent a hysterectomy because uterine fibroids had overtaken my uterus to the point where I suffered severe cramping and heavy bleeding on average 25 days out of the month as opposed to the average 5 for a normal menstrual cycle. "Alternatives" to hysterectomy, such as uterine artery embolization, MRI-Guided Focused Ultra sound and myomectomy (which carries the same surgical risks and recovery time as hysterecotomy) are not permanent solutions to treating fibroids, which often grow back. My ovaries were retained because I am at a low risk for cancer and am 41. My sister, who underwent the same procedure for the same reason, elected to have her ovaries removed because she is 50 and facing menopause anyway. I think important that any woman facing this surgery consider all the options, but please don't suggest that these options are as viable as a hysterectomy because they are not. If you do want to preserve your uterus, these procedures may be right for you, but good luck getting your insurance to pay for them. Post-hysterectomy, I have my active, healthy life back. I could not have made a better choice.

Anonymous said...

The segment on heartburn surgery is misleading. I don't understand why they opted not to interview some of the pioneers in the procedure like Tom DeMeester or Charles Filipi. Lifestyle changes rarely work, as most people don't continue more than a few months at most. Esophageal cancer rates are climbing faster than any other cancer in the US. Many respected US surgeons believe this is because acid suppression medications mask early symptoms and they also don't prevent bile reflux. Understand this: reflux is a mechanical problem and can only be fixed by reconstructing the valve.

Anonymous said...

I'm concerned, too, about the cavalier attitude toward hysterectomy. My fibroids were so large, my uterus was fooled into thinking I was pregnant. It went into labor and was literally turning itself inside out, with a fibroid being expelled, by the time I went into surgery.

Since I had already had a permanent ileostomy and collectomy (something to avoid if possible), I didn't want more abdominal surgery. My doctor was trying to control the growth of the fibroids with the use of medicine not usually put to that use. Each dose cost $1000 and it was working till my insurance refused to pay for it.

I'm also concerned about the acid reflux shrug-off. Those of us with Crohn's disease (an increasing number), or who have hiatal hernias, will also have acid reflux. Surgery may not be the answer, but neither is 'life style changes'.