What is a Uterine Fibroid Embolization?
This safe, simple procedure was approved by the FDA. It reduces the bleeding, pain and other symptoms of uterine fibroids in 90% of women who have the treatment. With UFE, a catheter is guided through the femoral artery to the uterus through a tiny incision. Using x-ray guidance and contrast material, the specific arteries that feed the uterine fibroid are identified. Those arteries are injected with small particles. The particles wedge into the uterine vessels, blocking the flow of blood to the fibroid. Without a blood supply, the fibroid tissue dies and shrinks. All fibroids in the uterus can be treated in the same session. This procedure is performed under minimal sedation and typically takes approximately one hour.
Why would you need a Uterine Fibroid Embolization?
Uterine fibroid embolization is used as an alternative to surgery to treat uterine fibroids and minimize their symptoms.
Women may choose fibroid embolization over surgery for one or more of the following reasons:
- Significantly shorter recovery period
- Lower complication rate
- Minimal or no scarring
- Potentially preserve fertility
- Can’t or don’t want to receive a blood transfusion, which may be necessary during surgery
- Can’t receive general anesthesia
Our ability to use imaging guidance and cutting-edge technology minimizes patient risk. Prior to your procedure, your physician will discuss any potential risks with you.
Conditions to let us know about
Let your doctor know if you currently are pregnant or breast feeding, feeling ill, have a fever, or are taking any blood thinners.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization is covered by most private insurance providers as well as Medicare. We will seek authorization from your insurance company prior to your procedure.
Preparing for your procedure
If you are on blood thinners your doctor will instruct you if you need to stop these medications prior to the procedure. Your procedure requires sedation and you will need a responsible adult to give you a ride home.
Recovering from your procedure
You will receive moderate sedation during your procedure. You will stay in the recovery area until you are ready for discharge. You will be given written post procedure discharge instructions that will advise you about return to normal physical activity. If you have any questions after your procedure, please call the RIA Interventional Suite at 720-493-3406.