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Uterine Fibroid Embolization/Uterine Artery Embolization

Uterine Fibroid Embolization/Uterine Artery Embolization

Uterine fibroids are very common non-cancerous (benign) growths that develop in the muscular wall of the uterus. They can range in size from very tiny (a quarter of an inch) to larger than a cantaloupe. Uterine fibroids are the most common tumors of the female genital tract. You might hear them referred to as "fibroids" or by several other names, including leiomyoma, leiomyomata, myoma and fibromyoma. Fibroid tumors of the uterus are very common, but for most women, they either do not cause symptoms or cause only minor symptoms.

Uterine Fibroid Symptoms

Most fibroids don’t cause symptoms—only 10 to 20 percent of women who have fibroids require uterine fibroid treatment. Depending on size, location and number of fibroids, they may cause:

  • Heavy, prolonged menstrual periods and unusual monthly bleeding, sometimes with clots. This can lead to anemia.
  • Abnormally enlarged abdomen
  • Bladder pressure leading to a frequent urge to urinate
  • Pelvic pain and pressure

Uterine Fibroid Treatments

Nonsurgical Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)/Uterine Artery Embolization – A Major Advance in Women's Health and an Alternative to Hysterectomy Surgery for the Treatment of Uterine Fibroids

Uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), also known as uterine artery embolization (UAE), is performed by an interventional radiologist, a physician who is trained to perform this and other types of embolization and minimally invasive procedures. It is performed while the patient is conscious, but sedated and feeling no pain. It does not require general anesthesia.

The interventional radiologist makes a tiny nick in the skin in the groin and inserts a catheter into the femoral artery. Using real-time imaging, the physician guides the catheter through the artery and then releases tiny particles, the size of grains of sand, into the uterine arteries that supply blood to the fibroid tumor.

This blocks the blood flow to the fibroid tumor and causes it to shrink and die. UFE is quickly growing in popularity as women seek alternatives to hysterectomy surgery for the treatment of uterine fibroids.

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UFT treatment
UFT treatment