Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE) for Fibroids
Note: UAE is also referred to as Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE). Both terms refer to the same myoma treatment procedure.
Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE), also called Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE), is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to treat uterine fibroids. This surgery uses a technique called embolization which blocks the flow of blood through the vessels around the fibroids depriving them of the oxygen they need to grow. The oxygen deprivation results in the fibroids shrinking. Although a relatively new treatment for fibroids, UAE has been used for years to control heavy bleeding after childbirth. Myoma embolization is performed by an interventional radiologist who works in consultation with your gynecologist. The procedure takes about an hour. UAE is not recommended for women who are planning future pregnancies, because its effects on fertility are not conclusively known.
- Treats all fibroids simultaneously
- No abdominal scars
- Complications infrequent
- Benefits of Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE)
- Fibroids often shrink to half their original size 6 months after UAE
- Disadvantages of Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE)
- Bruising around the incision site
- Up to 2% of procedures are technically unsuccessful
- No tissue is obtained for pathologic diagnosis
- Allergy to x-ray contrast material (iodine)
- Fertility: The question of whether uterine artery embolization reduces fertility has not yet been conclusively answered
- Renal insufficiency (kidney disease)
- Pregnant women
- History of Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)
Learn about a new MR Guided focused ultrasound treatment which destroys fibroids without incisions.