Many operations are necessary for good health but the four surgeries discussed below have been studied by various research studies and should be avoided if it is possible. Even though they seem to work for a short period of time, numerous investigation by doctors have found they can have uncertain outcomes for the treatment of particular diseases and could possibly cause harm in the long run. However this article is not meant to replace any medical treatment and is not intended to take the place of any primary care physician’s advice. Do not treat it as such. Always discuss personal information with a doctor before making any health care decisions.
It is also important to remember that any type of surgery is dangerous. A body believes an operation is a severe threat to its safety and therefore even minor procedures have the chance of major risks happening, such as blood clots, extreme bleeding, infections and even impairment to other body organs. This means it is vital to know if a surgery is really necessary.
Complex spinal fusion operation for stenosis. If a person has this surgery, a physician puts in grafts of bone which join two or more vertebrae together. This is supposedly to avoid motion and halt back pain. The process is used to often treat the pain of spinal stenosis, which happens when soft tissues between vertebrae smooth out and cause compression on the spinal cord. There actually is very little agreement on how to best treat stenosis, so doctors usually just come up with their own inclinations, stated Dr. Richard Deyo, who is a professor of medicine at Oregon University.
However it appears that the chief treatment choice appears to be the fusion surgery. Dr. Deyo recently examined the records of over 30,000 patients who had gone through the surgery and discovered that compound fusion procedures had increased an alarming 1,500 percent between 2002 and 2007.
Risks for this operation are substantial. It was found that those who had the fusion surgery were almost three times more likely to have life-threatening complications than those who went through less invasive surgery. Dr. Deyo also found that the majority of fusion patients experienced no more back pain relief than individuals who instead had physical therapy. The vertebrae located below and above the fusion areas have to do much more bending and there is a lot of stress on a person’s back.
Before a person decides to have any kind of back surgery, he or she needs to be sure they have completely drained all conservative measures, such as physical therapy, medications, cortisone injections and even acupuncture. It is believed that less than three percent of all back pain needs any type of surgery.
Knee Arthroscopy Surgery for Osteoarthritis. With this operation, a doctor puts a small camera inside the knee, and then inserts tiny instruments through various other slits in order to patch up aging or ripped cartilage. Studies have shown this surgery does well when a person has torn his or her meniscal tissue, but it has been found not to be any more successful than non-invasive therapies in treating osteoarthritis of the knee. In a study performed back in 2008, nearly 180 patients who suffered from osteoarthritis were placed in one of two groups and received either physical and medical therapy without any surgery or got therapy and surgery combined. When the two groups were examined two years later, it was discovered they had almost identical outcomes. Each group reported they had less pain and stiffness and were more mobile.
Colin Nelson, who works as a senior research assistant at FIMDM, stated that if an individual is experiencing knee pain, he or she needs to begin with the least invasive therapy and work up if needed. These treatments would include lifestyle changes like doing specific exercises, possibly cortisone injections and medications if necessary.
Hysterectomies for Uterine Fibroids. Every year roughly 610,000 American women undergo hysterectomies, which is the removal of their uteruses. Research studies have shown that most of them could be unnecessary. A hysterectomy is vital if a female is suffering from cancer, which is what happens in about 10 percent of operations. However, most women have the procedure to stop heavy bleeding or aching caused by uterine fibroids. These are benign growths which occur in the wall of the uterus.
The complications are many and common. Females who have a hysterectomy have over a 60 percent bigger chance of incontinence by the age 60, a research study done by the University of California, San Francisco discovered. If a woman has a hysterectomy which also means ovary removal, this puts the female into immediate menopause. Dr. William Parker, who is the author of A Gynecologist’s Second Opinion and was the top investigator of a 2009 research study on long term health concerns after having a hysterectomy. It was found that these women also faced higher chances of lung cancer and heart disease.
If a woman is suffering from uterine fibroids, it is important for her to ask her primary care physician about other treatments such as uterine-artery embolization, where arteries leading to the uterus are blocked, and this stops the fibroids from growing. There is also a procedure which uses focused ultrasound and shrinks fibroids through ultrasound waves. Dr. Parker added that there have been various therapies for a number of years now but they still have not gained very much attention in the medical community.
A Stent Operation for Stable Angina. Stents are small mesh tubes which doctors use to open up arteries that are carrying blood toward the heart. If a person is having a heart attack, a stent can save his or her life but for people who have heart disease with stable angina. That is when they suffer chest pain after they have exerted themselves or went through high stress. A stent is most likely not any better at averting a heart attack or extending life than changes in lifestyle such as exercise and ingesting statins to bring down cholesterol, stated a research report performed back in 2007 by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Even with the findings that stents’ are ineffective, nearly 500,000 are embedded every year for stable chest pain, stated Dr. Sanjay Kaul, who is a cardiologist at the Los Angeles Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute. Physicians regularly put in the stents during heart catheterization procedures to assess people’ blood vessels, explained Dr. Lee Lucas, who is an epidemiologist at a Maine research center, who claims that the catheterization should be done only as a diagnostic test, and stenting only performed later if necessary. The doctor stated that it needs to be a two-stage procedure, but as of now, patients do not get to leave the cath lab in order to think it over.
If a person is ordered a heart catheterization by his or her physician, he or she needs to find out if they can hold off any treatment, such as stenting, to have in a different procedure. Before ever agreeing to a heart cath, the person needs to make sure he or she has looked at all other alternatives. A person needs to make sure to have a stress test. They also need to look at their respective diets, exercise programs or if they are taking any cholesterol medications.
Dr. Lucas explained that it had been found that over 20 percent of patients who have the stent catheterization do not even have symptoms, 30 to 50 percent had not went through any type of stress test, and 30 percent had not been treated with any medical therapy. If plaque is beginning to form in an individual’s arteries, this is a complete body disease, not just heart. Some stents will not keep even a total inch of arteries clear. A person will still need forceful medical therapy in order to stop any problems in the future.
There are many operations that are necessary for good health but the four surgeries which have been discussed above have been studied by research studies and should be avoided if possible. Even though they seem to work for a short period of time, numerous investigation by doctors have found they can have uncertain outcomes for the treatment of particular diseases and could possibly cause harm in the long run.
By Kimberly Ruble