Extracorporeal Manual Morcellation of Very Large Uteri Within an Enclosed Endoscopic Bag: Our 5-Year Experience

J Minim Invasive Gynecol. Sep-Oct 2016;23(6):903-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jmig.2016.03.016. Epub 2016 Apr 4.


Study objectives: To describe a technique to manually morcellate large uteri within a polyurethane endoscopic bag at the time of laparoscopic hysterectomy, and report perioperative outcomes from our 5 years of experience.

Study design: Retrospective review of all consecutive hysterectomies with uterine weight >500 g performed between January 2010 and December 2014 in which the uterus was manually morcellated within an endoscopic bag by either an abdominal or vaginal approach (Canadian Task Force Classification Level III).

Setting: Tertiary care academic medical center.

Patients: A total of 104 women with a uterine weight >500 g who underwent laparoscopic hysterectomy using a manual morcellation technique.

Intervention: Manual morcellation was done extracorporeally, within a partially exteriorized specimen bag, using a scalpel under direct visualization by the operating surgeon.

Measurements and main results: A total of 104 laparoscopic hysterectomies were performed in women with a uterus weighing >500 g using a manual morcellation technique for specimen extraction. The median patient age was 48.1 years (range, 34-69 years), and the median body mass index was 31.0 kg/m(2) (range, 19.1-56.7 kg/m(2)). The median blood loss and specimen weight were 200 mL (range, 20-1200 mL) and 741.5 g (range, 500-1930 g), respectively. Morcellation was performed through an abdominal approach in 58.7% of the patients and through a vaginal approach in 41.3%. The median duration of morcellation was 14.8 minutes (range, 4.5-21.6 minutes) for the abdominal route and 11.7 minutes (range, 5.2-16.8 minutes) for the vaginal route. Occult malignancy was identified in 2 patients. There were no complications related to the morcellation technique or gross bag rupture.

Conclusion: Manual morcellation within an endoscopic bag allows for the extraction of large uteri without the use of a power morcellator. In our 5 years of experience, we have not experienced any incidence of gross spillage, visually noted bag rupture, or complications associated with our morcellation technique.

Keywords: Contained morcellation; Endoscopic specimen bag; Laparoscopy; Large uteri; Manual morcellation.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysterectomy / methods
  • Laparoscopy / instrumentation
  • Middle Aged
  • Morcellation / instrumentation
  • Morcellation / methods*
  • Organ Size
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgical Instruments
  • Uterine Neoplasms / surgery
  • Uterus / pathology
  • Uterus / surgery*