Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)

Uterine Fibroid Embolization, also known as uterine artery embolization (UAE), is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat uterine fibroids. Uterine fibroids are noncancerous growths that develop within or on the walls of the uterus. They can cause symptoms such as heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, frequent urination, and reproductive issues.

Signs and Symptoms of UFE:

  • Enlarged uterus
  • Abnormally enlarged abdomen
  • Heavy, prolonged menstrual periods
  • Unusual monthly bleeding, sometimes with clots
  • Severe menstrual cramps
  • Pelvic pain, pressure or discomfort
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Frequent urination
  • Constipation
  • Excessive back pain

How are uterine fibroid embolizations performed?

During a uterine fibroid embolization procedure, imaging guidance is used to insert a thin catheter into the blood vessels that supply the fibroids with blood. Small particles or embolic agents, such as tiny plastic beads or gelatin sponge particles, are then injected into the blood vessels. These particles block the blood flow to the fibroids, causing them to shrink and die.

The procedure is typically performed under local anesthesia, and patients are often given sedation to help them relax. It is usually done on an outpatient basis, meaning patients can go home on the same day.

What are the benefits of an uterine fibroid embolization?

Uterine fibroid embolization offers several advantages over traditional surgical treatments, such as hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) or myomectomy (removal of the fibroids). It is less invasive, has a shorter recovery time, and avoids the need for major surgery. Additionally, it preserves the uterus, which is important for women who desire to maintain fertility or avoid the potential complications of hysterectomy.

Experience pain relief from uterine fibroids by scheduling a consultation at our Thornton, CO Vascular Center today.