Is Uterine Fibroid Embolization Right for You?

by USA Fibroid Centers Fibroid Treatment Centers

Uterine Fibroid Embolization or UFE is a minimally invasive procedure to treat uterine fibroids which can cause infertility problems, pressure on the bladder or bowels, cramping and heavy menstrual bleeding. A specially trained women’s health physician, called an interventional radiologist, performs the procedure

You may be the right candidate for Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) if you fall in any of the below categories:

  • Women who are experiencing fibroid symptoms
  • People who are not surgical candidates, e.g. bleeding disorders, obesity and anemia
  • Women who are looking for non-surgical alternatives
  • Those who want to retain their uterus
  • Women who want to avoid scarring
  • Those who prefer to recover in the comfort of their own home, rather than an often expensive hospital 

Indications for UFE

You may need UFE treatment if you experience any of the below symptoms:

Heavy bleeding: Fibroids may cause prolonged periods, heavy, or irregular bleeding which can result in significant loss of red blood cells or lead to anemia in some cases.

Pressure: If a fibroid pushes against another nearby organ, such a bladder, it can result in frequent urination.  A large fibroid may push against the rectum, creating problems in smooth bowel movement.

Pain: Position and size of the fibroid within the uterus as well as its compression on the other organs in the area can result in pain. Depending on the size and location of the fibroids, they can also make sex painful and unpleasant.

Compared to surgical procedures (hysterectomy or myomectomy), women treated for Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE):

  • Do not require a hospital stay. 
  • While hysterectomy is performed under general anesthesia, UFE is performed under conscious sedation. The patient can talk to the uterine fibroid specialist as the procedure is going on, and listen to music! The anesthesia used is similar to the one applied during dental procedures. 
  • Your chances of getting pregnant after hysterectomy are zero, while most women who have UFE are able to achieve successful pregnancy after fibroid treatment. 
  • The removal of the uterus can cause hormone imbalances which can affect a woman physically and emotionally. UFE doesn’t interfere with hormone levels in the body. 
  • UFE does not leave a scar like myomectomy procedures do. 

How UFE is performed?

The intervention radiologist inserts a thin catheter through a nick in the skin over the femoral (groin) or radial (wrist) artery. The incision is roughly the size of the tip of a pencil. The catheter is maneuvered inside the artery with the help of live ultrasound guidance. It is advanced into the arteries of the uterus that supply blood to the fibroid.  In order to identify the blood flow to the fibroids, a special dye is injected through the catheter by the uterine fibroid specialist. FDA approved microspheres or beads, are then released by the catheter that float downstream to block the small blood vessels, depriving the fibroid of oxygen and nutrients. The procedure is repeated for any other artery that supplies blood and nutrients to the fibroid. At the end of the procedure, the catheter is removed and a small bandage is placed over the incision. This non-surgical fibroid treatment results in the  shrinking and ultimately dying of the fibroids.

Same day discharge with fast recovery

UFE is a minimally invasive, outpatient procedure that is performed by an interventional radiologist. Most patients go home the same, or following, day with slight cramping and little pain. As your body recovers during the first few days, a low-grade fever is an occasional side effect. Due to its minimally invasive nature, many women resume light activities within few days. During the first few months following the procedure, you will have a few follow-up  clinic visits to check in with symptoms and recovery.Many women report that their symptoms have significantly improved and they are able to do activities that they could not before.

If you are looking for non-surgical methods to alleviate uterine fibroid symptoms, look no further than the USA Fibroid Centers. Treatments at USA Fibroid Centers, are covered under most major insurance and some Medicaid plans. Visit for more details regarding our services, locations, and doctors.

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Created on May 9th 2018 01:06. Viewed 313 times.


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