I came to Dr. Kenneth Levey because I had developed several large fibroids, and was experiencing extremely heavy periods and a lot of cramping and discomfort as a result. When a test discovered that one of my kidneys was starting to become damaged by the fibroids, I decided to go ahead and have a myomectomy done to remove them surgically. Because of their size of the fibroids, my primary gynecologist had suggested I would need to have them operated on through a large, vertical incision.
I was really afraid of big-incision, open-belly surgery like that—it’s so intrusive. I live on Long Island, so I began researching surgeons in New York City who might be able to do the procedure in a minimally-invasive way. I found Dr. Levey, who had that expertise and accepted my insurance. I was also pleased to learn that he worked with NYU Langone Medical Center, since I’d been treated at NYU for thyroid cancer previously and had a very good experience there.
When I met with Dr. Levey, he explained that he would give me medication to shrink the tumors before the surgery, but added that because the fibroids were so large, he wouldn’t know for sure if he could remove all the fibroids using robotic surgery until he actually began the procedure. He also told me that if he found during the procedure that he wasn’t able to do the operation robotically, he would try to do it with a bikini-line incision, which was still better than a vertical incision.
We decided in that first meeting to go ahead with the robotic procedure, and Dr. Levey gave me my first shot of medication to help shrink the fibroids. I ended up having two additional shots, three months apart, administered by my doctor on Long Island. The medication shrank the fibroids considerably, but one in particular was still very large. So when I arrived at NYU on the day of my surgery, we didn’t know if the robotic approach would be feasible or not.
As soon as the procedure was over, Dr. Levey came out to talk to my husband in the waiting room. He was beaming, and very excited. He told my husband that he’d been able to take the fibroid out robotically, and that it was almost two pounds—the second-biggest fibroid he’d ever removed by this method.
The surgery took place on May 26th. Immediately after the operation, I was amazed at how good I felt. I didn’t feel any real discomfort other than a little cramping. I’ve had knee surgery to replace a ligament, and that recovery was pretty painful. This was nothing like that. I didn’t need morphine or an overnight stay in the hospital. I went home the same day as the procedure, and took ibuprofen and Vicodin for three days—that’s all. Three weeks later, I was driving again and able to walk my dogs, and was completely symptom-free as long as I was careful not to overdo things.
Although I don’t have to return to my job until September—I work for a school—Dr. Levey plans to clear me for work in late July. He has stayed in very regular touch with me following the operation, and gave me his cell phone number in case I needed to reach him. I’d just like to add that he’s a wonderful doctor, and he did a wonderful job!