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J&J unit Ethicon withdraws hysterectomy device from market over cancer risk

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Johnson & Johnson world headquarters in New Brunswick.
Johnson & Johnson world headquarters in New Brunswick. - ()

Somerville-based Ethicon on Wednesday issued a letter to hospitals, saying it is voluntarily withdrawing its power morcellator devices from the market.

The devices are used during hysterectomies and the removal of uterine fibroids, but risk spreading undiagnosed cancerous tissue during the procedures, the letter says.

While Ethicon says the devices perform as they are supposed to, it says the risks may outweigh the benefits:

“Because of this uncertainty, Ethicon believes that a market withdrawal of Ethicon Morcellation Devices is the appropriate course of action at this time until further medical guidelines are established and/or new technologies are developed to mitigate the risk.”

The devices’ use was suspended in April, Ethicon said.

Ethicon is a unit of New Brunswick-based Johnson & Johnson.


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