19 Jul UFE May Be the Answer for Women Who Suffer From Uterine Fibroid Tumors
About three out of every four women in the US experience uterine fibroid tumors during their lifetime. This means suffering from pelvic pain and many other depilating symptoms. However, there is relief! Through a minimally-invasive, non-surgical procedure called uterine fibroid embolization (UFE).
Living with fibroid uterine tumors is painful. One may endure excessive menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, pressure, and increased urination frequency. With UFE there in now, Hysterectomy and myomectomy are not your only options.
UFE shrinks fibroids and provides immediate relief. UFE occurs in an outpatient setting. This means no incisions, no general anesthesia and a much shorter recovery time. It provides proven relief. Allowing a woman to save their uterus, which can lead to long-term health benefits.
Uterine fibroids are benign growths that form in the smooth muscle layers of the uterus. These fibroids can cause a variety of symptoms that affect your quality of life. Some symptoms may occur. Symptoms such as, heavy menstrual bleeding, long menstrual periods, pelvic pain, and frequent urination. Also constipation, bloating, pain during intercourse and backache or leg pain may occur.
Before, the only treatments available for uterine fibroid tumors were a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) or myomectomy (removal of the fibroids). These options are generally effective, but require general anesthesia. Additionally, there is a lengthy recovery time and have higher complication rates than UFE.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization Treatment
Uterine Fibroid Embolization is a safe, non-invasive procedure. It shrinks the fibroids while saving your uterus. A vascular surgeon performs this procedure. It blocks blood flow to fibroids in the uterus. Also know as uterine artery embolization. Women who are not planning a pregnancy may consider UFE as a possible option.
The minimally-invasive procedure begins with a thin, flexible tube called a catheter. The catheter is placed into a blood vessel in the upper thigh (femoral artery). A substance called contrast material is then injected into the catheter. This may cause a warming sensation as it travels up to the uterus. The surgeon uses real-time X-ray on a video screen (fluoroscopy) to see the arteries. This allows the surgeon to guide the catheter to the arteries that supply blood to the fibroid. A solution of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) particles is injected into the uterine arteries through the catheter. The particles build up in the targeted arteries and block blood flow to the fibroid.
UFE normally takes between one and three hours. When the procedure is over, the surgeon removes the catheter, and pressure is applied to the puncture site for several minutes. Patients remain in bed for about six to eight hours. Then the patient may go home with bed rest instructions or remain in the hospital overnight. Moderate to severe pelvic pain is common for six to 12 hours after a UFE procedure.
Patients may experience vaginal bleeding for a couple of weeks. This is due to the fibroid that is breaking down. In some cases, bleeding or pain persists for several months. Some women may also pass fibroid tissue from the vagina. This occurs usually six weeks to three months after having UFE.
Patients should be able to return to normal activities in seven to 10 days. If severe bleeding or pain occurs, patients should call the doctor immediately or seek medical attention.