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Bowel Injury During a Myomectomy

Two types of bowel injuries can occur during a myomectomy: perforation and burn. A perforation injury means that there is a hole in the bowel. In rare cases, these can cause a serious infection that requires a longer hospital stay, IV antibiotics, or surgery. A burn (or thermal) injury can also cause serious complications. However, bowel injury during a myomectomy is rare.

Bowel Injury During a Myomectomy: An Overview

Bowel injury during a myomectomy is rare, occurring only in about 3 out of 1,000 procedures. The bowels are the intestines, which begin at the end of the stomach and end at the anus. Injuries of the bowel are of two main types:
  • Perforation injuries
  • Burns.
Perforation
A perforation injury means that there is a hole in the bowel. This can occur during the placement of the needle or other sharp surgical device -- or during the actual procedure. The size of the hole can vary, along with the treatment choices for the injury. Because they can seal themselves off, small perforations are usually managed by simply observing the patient in the hospital for a few days.
In rare cases, perforations can cause a serious infection of the lining of the abdomen and may require a longer hospital stay, IV antibiotics, or surgery. More serious injuries may require an open surgery or the removal of the damaged piece of bowel.
Rarely, a colostomy -- which is a bag for stool that rests on the abdomen -- may need to be placed temporarily or permanently after removal of the damaged bowel. However, these more serious bowel injuries are very rare.
Burn
Although uncommon, thermal -- or burn -- injury to the bowel can occur. This may require extended observation in the hospital or, rarely, removal of the damaged bowel, which would require a colostomy.
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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