What Are Uterine Fibroids

Uterine fibroids are benign muscular growths on the wall of the uterus. In many instances the fibroids are large enough to cause symptoms that interfere with daily life.

Most women develop fibroids of some size during reproductive years. African-American women are most likely to develop fibroids followed by those of Hispanic heritage and Asians.

What are the symptoms of uterine fibroids?

Symptoms may include: 

  • Heavy, prolonged menstrual periods, sometimes with clots
  • Anemia (fatigue and/or shortness of breath due to low blood count)
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Pain and pressure between the hip bones and in the back of the legs
  • Frequent urination
  • Constipation or bloating
  • Enlarged belly
uterine fibroids compared to a healthy uterus

What is Uterine Fibroid Embolization?

Chart showing the minimally invasive uterine fibroid embolization procedure

Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is a minimally invasive, non-surgical treatment that can sometimes be an alternative to a hysterectomy. The patient is sedated and typically feels little to no pain while a thin tube (called a catheter) is inserted through an artery in the upper thigh or wrist and guided to the artery providing bloodflow to the fibroid. Specially engineered particles are introduced through the tube, cutting off the blood supply to the fibroid and causing it to shrink over time.

This treatment is effective in reducing symptoms, including reducing or eliminating pain and excess menstrual bleeding in more than 85% of cases. Typically, the treatment will result in some post-procedure pain and discomfort. Treatment will require  a short post procedure “recovery” of a few hours at the center to ensure any pain is managed before you go home. In most cases, a recovery process of up to a week will be recommended before you can return to work or full activity.  Your fibroids will continue to shrink over a longer period of time so we continue to monitor you and evaluate your progress over about 3 months.

Is this treatment right for you?

Patients who are an ideal candidate for UFE include women who have symptomatic fibroids and who want to keep their uterus. 

If you do not want major surgery, want a faster recovery time, want to preserve your ability to have children, or may not be a good candidate for major surgery, you may be an ideal candidate for UFE.

An informative and caring process

Our patients want to make informed decisions about treatment with a trusted, world-class medical group that supports an effective pain management plan. 

We have responded with processes that are minimally invasive and limit your loss of work and personal time. Our experienced physicians and staff keep you informed at each step of the process. 

We always provide a personalized evaluation, treatment, and pain management plan. Our support continues after treatment with a comprehensive follow up plan. 

Reach out to us today.

doctor explains uterine fibroid embolization to patient