Interventions to reduce haemorrhage during myomectomy for fibroids

Eugene J Kongnyuy, Charles Shey Wiysonge
Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2009 July 8, (3): CD005355

BACKGROUND: Uterine myomas (fibroids) are benign tumours of the uterus. Myomectomy, the surgical removal of myomas, is an important treatment option especially for women who wish to preserve their uteri. The major problem with myomectomy is excessive bleeding, which can be life-threatening and prolong postoperative stay. Knowledge of the effectiveness of the interventions to reduce bleeding during myomectomy is essential to enable evidence-based clinical decisions.

OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness, safety, tolerability, and costs of interventions to reduce blood loss during myomectomy.

SEARCH STRATEGY: Electronic searches were undertaken in the Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group Specialised Register, CENTRAL (The Cochrane Library 2008, Issue 3), MEDLINE (1950 to September 2008), EMBASE (1980 to September 2008), CINAHL (1982 to September 2008), and PsycINFO (up to September 2008).

SELECTION CRITERIA: Only randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared the use of interventions to reduce blood loss during myomectomy to placebo or no treatment were included.

DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: The two authors independently selected RCTs for inclusion, assessed the methodological quality of trials, and extracted data. We expressed study results as mean differences (MD) for continuous data and odds ratios for dichotomous data, with 95% confidence intervals (CI).

MAIN RESULTS: Ten RCTs with 531 participants met our inclusion criteria: intramyometrial vasopressin and analogues (two trials), intravenous oxytocin (two trials), and one RCT for each of the interventions vaginal misoprostol, peri-cervical tourniquet, chemical dissection with sodium-2-mercaptoethane sulfonate (mesna), intramyometrial bupivacaine plus epinephrine, tranexamic acid and the enucleation of myoma by morcellation while it is attached to the uterus. We found significant reductions in blood loss with misoprostol (MD -149.00 ml, 95% CI -229.24 to -68.76), vasopressin and analogues (MD -298.72 ml, 95% CI -593.10 to -4.34), bupivacaine plus epinephrine (MD -68.60 ml, 95% CI -93.69 to - 43.51), tranexamic acid (MD -243 ml, 95% CI -460 to -25.98), and peri-cervical tourniquet (MD -1870.00 ml, 95% CI -2547.16 to -1192.84). There was no evidence of effect on blood loss with myoma enucleation by morcellation or oxytocin. The trials did not assess the tolerability and costs of the different interventions.

AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: Evidence is limited from a few RCTs that misoprostol, vasopressin, bupivacaine plus epinephrine, tranexamic acid, tourniquet, and mesna may reduce bleeding during myomectomy. There is no evidence that oxytocin and morcellation have an effect on intraoperative blood loss. There is a need for adequately powered RCTs to shed more light on the effectiveness, safety, and costs of different interventions in reducing blood loss during myomectomy.

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