Fibroid Embolization

What is it?
You may have heard recently about a new treatment for fibroid tumors of the uterus called fibroid embolization. Fibroid tumors can cause uncontrolled bleeding and pain. They are usually treated by removing the tumors surgically or with a hysterectomy. Fibroid embolization is a new, non-surgical treatment for fibroids. Unlike treatment by way of a hysterectomy, fibroid embolization does not leave the woman sterile.

How it Works
In fibroid embolization, a catheter is guided into the arteries that supply the uterus with blood. Then small plastic or gelatin sponge particles are injected into the artery to reduce the blood flow. This procedure appears to result in nearly complete symptom relief and tumor reductions of about half within 9 months after the procedure is performed. Fibroid embolization requires one day in the hospital, followed by about 7 to 10 days of rest at home. Most women who have undergone fibroid embolization find that their menstrual bleeding is reduced and that pelvic pain and pressure are nearly completely vanquished.

Caution is in Order
This procedure is recommended as a safe alternative to women past childbearing age. This procedure is not one that is done to preserve childbearing ability. The placenta needs a good uterine wall blood supply to grow the fetus. However, some patients have gone on to become pregnant. The success of these pregnancies is not known, and women are still encouraged to avoid conception after a fibroid embolization procedure.

The doctors did not address sexuality issues. Blood supply to the pelvis is an important part of the female sexual response. This issue needs to be evaluated. Also, the doctors did not address the issue of their patients' age. They suggest their study involved peri-menopausal women. Fibroid related problems sometimes resolve themselves as women reach menopause. Part of these doctors' good results may have happened over the course of the year naturally, even if they had not tried their new procedure.

Rate this article: (1=lowest, 5=highest) 1    2    3    4    5   

Copyright © 1999 GenneX Healthcare Technologies,Inc.


a listing of scientific articles and texts used.

ARCHIVE (complete)