Interventional Radiology Clinic located in Houston, TX
Nearly 30% of women ages 30-45 have fibroids, but they can be difficult to detect. For noninvasive fibroid treatment, contact Andrew Doe, MD, or Sandra Newberry, MD. At Alate Health in Houston, they specialize in innovative, minimally invasive solutions like uterine fibroid embolization (UFE). To find safe and effective treatments for fibroid symptoms, call Alate Health or schedule an appointment online today.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization Q & A
What are uterine fibroids?
A uterine fibroid is a noncancerous growth in your uterus. These growths can vary in size from a small marble to a large grapefruit, and you can have more than one fibroid at a time.
Uterine fibroids can develop quickly over a few months or slowly over years. Depending on their size and location, they can put pressure on your bladder, intestines, and nerves in your pelvis, leading to several uncomfortable symptoms.
What are the symptoms of uterine fibroids?
Common signs of uterine fibroid include:
- Periods lasting longer than a week
- Using more than 10 pads or tampons each day
- Pelvic pain or pressure
- Urinary incontinence
- Constipation, bloating, or abdominal swelling
- Painful intercourse
- Leg pain
Sometimes, uterine fibroids can also lead to anemia and infertility.
What causes uterine fibroids?
The exact cause of uterine fibroids isn’t known, but several factors can increase your risk of developing this condition, including:
- Being 35-50 years of age or African American
- Having a family history of uterine fibroids
- Being overweight or obese
- Not getting regular exercise
- Following a diet high in red meat and low in fruits and vegetables
- Drinking alcohol
You’re also less likely to have uterine fibroids if you’ve given birth.
Unlike traditional surgical procedures, such as removing the uterus with a hysterectomy, Dr. Doe and his team treat fibroids with minimally invasive treatments like uterine fibroid embolization.
What is uterine fibroid embolization?
Uterine fibroid embolization, or UFE, is a minimally invasive fibroid treatment where your Alate Health provider makes a small incision in your groin. Then, they insert a tiny catheter into the artery feeding your fibroid. Once in place, your provider injects embolic agents into the vein which block the blood supply to your fibroids. Without blood, your fibroids shrink and disappear.
UFE treatments provide relief to 90% of women with fibroids, making it a safe and effective treatment that reduces the need for unnecessary hysterectomies. You can also return to work within a week of having UFE.
Additional benefits of UFE treatment include:
- Preserves your uterus
- Fewer risks and faster recovery times
- Less invasive with no scarring
- No general anesthetic or hospitalization
- Covered by insurance
There are also fewer if any complications with uterine fibroid embolization compared to surgical treatment for uterine fibroids.
For more information on uterine fibroids and UFE, call Alate Health or schedule an in-person or virtual appointment online today.