Did you know that it is estimated that 1 in 3 women in the US will have undergone a hysterectomy by the age of 60? Furthermore, 20% of those women that underwent a hysterectomy may not have necessarily needed it. These are the findings of a study by the University of Michigan that were published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology in January. Despite the discussion of how alternative treatments can be better for a patient than a hysterectomy – e.g., less invasive, non-permanent, etc. – hysterectomies are still the primary gynecological procedure performed by gynecological surgeons. Another finding of the study was that close to 40% of women had no record of an alternative treatment before their hysterectomy. In fact, a look at the recent procedure volumes (see infographic below) shows that between 2009 and 2014, the decline in hysterectomy volumes has slowed. Maybe it’s the versatility that the procedure is able to treat multiple indications, or maybe it’s related to high physician familiarity, but without an adjustment in physician treatment protocol or increased patient awareness, hysterectomies aren’t disappearing anytime soon.

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