Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is performed by an interventional radiologist (IR), a doctor who uses x-rays and other imaging techniques to see inside the body and treat conditions without surgery. During the UFE procedure, you are given sedation medication, but remain conscious. The IR inserts a catheter (a thin, hollow tube) into your upper thigh, or into your wrist, to access your artery. Tiny, round beads – each measuring about the size of a grain of sand – are injected into the catheter and into each fibroid-feeding vessel. These tiny beads block the flow of blood to the fibroids, causing the fibroids to shrink and relieving symptoms.
This minimally invasive procedure requires only a tiny nick in the skin and is performed while the patient is conscious but sedated, usually drowsy and feeling no pain. Our highly trained and skilled physicians and caregivers commonly perform these procedures in PVG managed facilities in an outpatient environment.
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