Uterine Fibroid Embolization


Uterine fibroids are benign growths that develop in the wall of the uterus. They affect about one in five women in the United States. The cause of uterine fibroid tumors is unknown. They tend to be more common in African-American women than in Caucasian women.

While many fibroids cause no symptoms, some can cause symptoms such as:

  • Heavy and painful periods
  • Bleeding between periods
  • An urgent and frequent need to urinate
  • Pelvic cramping or pain with periods
  • Sensation of fullness or pressure in the lower abdomen

Fibroids occur in 20-40 percent of women age 35 and over. The fibroids are diagnosed by physical exam and confirmed by ultrasound or MRI. Those patients whose symptoms are not relieved by medical therapy have additional therapeutic options, consisting of surgery and fibroid embolization.

According to the American Academy of Family Practice, uterine fibroids account for 60 percent of the 600,000 hysterectomies performed in the United States each year.

Less-Invasive Treatment Option
South Nassau treats this condition using uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), a minimally invasive procedure that blocks the blood supply to the fibroids in the uterus, causing them to shrink. The traditional method uses an artery in the groin to reach the fibroids and requires that the patient lay flat for several hours afterward to prevent bleeding complications.

But at South Nassau, fellowship-trained interventional radiologists work closely with obstetrician/gynecologists to perform uterine fibroid embolization by using an artery in the wrist to reach the fibroids. “Patients can sit up after the procedure, and it makes for an easier recovery,” explains Sydney Yoon, MD, director of Interventional Radiology. “This radial approach to UFE is a major advance in women’s health that is safe and effective.”

During the procedure, which takes less than an hour, interventional radiologists thread a catheter into an artery in the wrist, guided by real-time X-ray.  Through the catheter, they inject small particles–the size of grains of sand—that block the arteries supplying blood to the fibroids.

On average, fibroids will typically shrink to half their original volume after three months. After one year, they may shrink up to 70 percent.

To schedule a consultation, call 516-632-3047
.

Who Is a Candidate for UFE?
The ideal candidates for uterine fibroid embolization are premenopausal women who experience heavy menstrual bleeding and pain and do not plan to have children; or postmenopausal women who suffer from pelvic discomfort and urinary frequency, urgency or incontinence due to the size and number of uterine fibroids.

UFE is safe, well-tolerated and highly successful; however, it is not recommended for women who plan to have children because no long-term studies exist on the procedure’s effects on fertility.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call the hospital’s Interventional Radiology Department at (877) SOUTH-NASSAU  or (877-768-8462).

Meet Our Team



Learn More

South Nassau Radiology

Common Conditions

Common Conditions

Some of the more common conditions affecting women include: hysterectomy and treatment options......

Read More

Diagnosis & Treatment

Diagnosis & Treatment

Whether a condition is due to age, injury or cancer, our women’s specialists are experienced in a wide...

Read More

Urogynecology

Urogynecology

Urogynecology is a subspecialty of obstetrics and gynecology that focuses on the pelvic floor, including...

Read More

Gynecological Cancer

Gynecological Cancer

Cancer diagnosis and treatment are the strong focus of the women’s care specialists at South Nassau...

Read More

Infertility

Infertility

For genetic counseling, care for infertility and malignancies (cancer) of the reproductive tract...

Read More

Breast Care

Breast Care

At the South Nassau Center for Women's Imaging, our physicians and staff specialize in breast care...

Read More

Uterine Fibroid Embolization

Uterine Fibroid Embolization

South Nassau’s fellowship-trained interventional radiologists use minimally invasive...

Read More