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UFE provides less invasive procedure for removing fibroids in woman
an Ivanhoe / ABC Action News report 8/27/04

Women with uterine fibroids can now be treated and preserve their fertility, say researchers from Johns Hopkins Medical Institution.

Doctors believe fibroids inside the uterus may interfere with fertility by either preventing implantation of the embryo in the uterine wall or by interrupting a growing embryo that has already implanted. Women often experience heavy bleeding as a symptom of uterine fibroids.

In the past, the treatment was surgical removal of the fibroids, but that can affect fertility. Recently doctors have begun to treat women with uterine fibroid embolization (UFE).

UFE is a nonsurgical procedure in which small plastic and/or gelatin sponge particles are injected through a catheter. The particles cut off blood supply to the fibroid killing the tumor.

In the Johns Hopkins study, 29 women underwent UFE with plastic particles. The bleeding and heavy periods were alleviated immediately in 93 percent of the patients. None of the women experienced ovarian failure, which causes early menopause. Blood tests also revealed no significant changes in fertility hormone levels after the procedure.

While none of the women in the study have become pregnant, several say they are currently trying. However, in another study, six women did become pregnant after UFE.

Researchers conclude many young women can now be treated with UFE and most likely still be able to get pregnant without having to go through surgery.

If you would like to consult a Bay area doctor about the Uterine Fibroid Embolization procedure, you may get in touch with the experts at the Tampa General Intervention Radiology department by visiting or by calling (813) 844-4570.

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