Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)

Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)

What is Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)?

It’s relatively common for a woman to have uterine fibroids at some point in her life. In most cases, though, these benign tumors don’t cause any pain or other symptoms and are often only discovered during a routine pelvic examination. Uterine fibroids vary greatly in size and shape, generally from less than an inch to six inches in diameter, and can appear throughout the uterus, on its wall, or surface. 

In some cases, uterine fibroids cause women to experience heavy bleeding and pain during periods, bleeding between periods, pain during intercourse, pressure or pain in the abdomen, between hip bones or behind the legs, or an enlarged uterus. Constipation and bloating are also common symptoms.

Most often, they appear in women between 30 and 40 years of age, and more frequently in African American women. Family history, birth control use, alcohol use and red meat consumption are also risk factors in the development of fibroids.

Find out if you’re a candidate for UFE with this short quiz.

Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) for fibroids

How Are Uterine Fibroids Treated

If your fibroids are not causing pain or other symptoms, treatment may not be necessary. Your OB/GYN might wish to monitor their growth during annual examinations. Hormone treatment medication is an option to relieve symptoms such as heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pressure, although medication cannot eliminate fibroids and often has side effects, such as weight gain, vaginal dryness, and infertility.

If the symptoms of fibroids are causing pain and discomfort, treatment becomes necessary. In that case, many women are told that hysterectomy (surgical removal of the uterus) or myomectomy (surgical removal of the fibroids from within the uterus) are their only options. However, a hysterectomy has a high complication rate and uterus removal is linked to other health problems down the road, including heart disease, incontinence, and early menopause, even without ovary removal. Myomectomy preserves the uterus, but fibroids are prone to return and usually do so within 24 months.

Non-Surgical Treatment of Fibroids: Uterine Fibroid Embolization

Uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) is a less invasive, FDA-approved, and highly effective approach for treating fibroids that do not require the uterus to be removed. Performed on an outpatient basis and covered by most insurance, UFE is shown to be a safe alternative to hysterectomy or myomectomy surgery, even over the long term.

How is UFE performed?

The procedure is performed by a specialized doctor called an interventional radiologist, who uses X-ray imaging to guide a catheter through the blood vessels to the arteries feeding the fibroid. When there, the radiologist embolizes or “blocks” the blood vessels that feed the fibroid, depriving it of oxygenated blood. The fibroid then shrinks and the symptoms gradually disappear.


UFE Treatment At NG Vascular & Vein Center

If you have uterine fibroids and have questions or would like to understand all of your treatment options, please schedule an appointment with our doctor at 219-208-6218.


To find out if UFE is right for you, please take the short quiz below.

To learn more and see if you may be a candidate for uterine fibroid embolization, please contact us to make an appointment.

Take Our UFE Quiz

Are you experiencing pelvic pain, fullness, pressure, bloating, or discomfort, dizziness, heavy periods, or pain during intercourse?

Find Out If You Are A Good Candidate for UFE

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