How long does the procedure take?
UFE takes about an hour to complete.
Will I feel the catheter going through my arteries?
There is no sensation within the arteries as the catheter travels through them.
What happens to the fibroids after UFE?
Because the blood supply to the fibroid is blocked, the fibroid tissue dies with shrinkage in size resulting improvement of symptoms
Who is an ideal candidate for UFE?
An ideal candidate for UFE is a pre menopausal woman with fibroids who completed family and wants to avoid surgical procedures.
What are the limitations of UFE?
UFE is not performed in patients who have infection in the pelvis , pregnancy and allergy to contrast media.
What can I expect after the procedure?
- Patients may experience pelvic cramps, nausea and vomiting, which are well controlled with intravenous medications postoperatively.
- Most patients get a slight fever, fatigue after the procedure for a week or so which is a good sign that your fibroid is breaking down. It is called post embolization syndrome which is a normal side effect as your body reacts to the death of fibroid tissue.
- Patients can have watery or bloody vaginal discharge which can persist for 2 to 3 months. Some times the degenerated fibroid tissue will be expelled spontaneously.
Most women return to work within one to two weeks after the procedure.
What kind of vaginal discharge is worrisome?
If the vaginal discharge is thick and foul smelling and you are running high fever, indicates possibility of infection. You should consult treating doctor immediately.
What are the complications of UFE?
- UFE is a very safe method and, like other minimally invasive procedures, has significant advantages over conventional open surgery. However, there are some associated risks, as there are with any medical procedure. A small number of patients have experienced infection, which usually can be controlled by antibiotics. There also is a less than one percent chance of injury to the uterus, potentially leading to a hysterectomy.
- These complication rates are lower than those of hysterectomy and myomectomy.
Are there any restrictions in diet and activity after the procedure?
You can resume your normal diet without any restrictions the next day. Over next three to four days after the procedure you should slowly increase your activity. After a week you may have unrestricted activity including intercourse
What are the results of UFE?
Most patients will have improved pressure symptoms by the two to three weeks after the procedure. Reduction in bleeding symptoms is noted during the first or second menstrual cycle following the procedure. Over 90% of women who undergo UFE reported significant or total relief of symptoms. UFE is effective in treating multiple fibroid without harming the uterus.
How does UFE compare to surgery?
Multiple studies have shown UFE to be safer than the surgical alternatives. The risk of complication related to surgery is between 17% and 23% compared with 5% for UFE. The recurrence risk of fibroids with myomectomy is 23-51% over 5 years compared with 8% in women treated with UFE.
Can I get pregnant after UFE?
Technically you can get pregnant after UFE, through the procedure is not recommended for treatment of infertility. If you underwent hysterectomy there is no chance of getting pregnant again.