Uterine Fibroid Embolization
The uterus is a female reproductive organ located in the pelvis. Some women can form one or more benign tumors known as leiomyomas or fibroids in their uterus. These tumors can cause frequent, heavy periods, pelvic heaviness/pain, and/or constipation. Sometimes, these tumors can be treated by removing the tumor directly or the uterus in its entirety. Alternatively, Interventional Radiologists at HRA can help our gynecology colleagues shrink the fibroids and treat the symptoms by blocking the blood flow to the uterus.
First, using ultrasound and x-ray guidance, a small needle is used to enter the artery of the leg or wrist. Then, small catheters and wires are used to find the arteries that supply the uterus. Finally, plastic beads are slowly injected to block blood flow to the tumor and cause it to die.
The procedure has a low risk of bleeding, infection, and damage to nearby organs. It is usually performed for outpatients, who may stay in the hospital overnight for observation or may return home, depending on their preferences.
Pelvic Congestion Syndrome Embolization
Sometimes blood within the gonadal vein may flow backwards, which increases pressure in the veins next to the ovaries and causing them to enlarge. These enlarged veins can cause chronic pelvic pain and heaviness. Interventional Radiologists at HRA can help our gynecology colleagues shrink these enlarged veins and treat these symptoms by blocking the reversed blood flow from the inside.
Using ultrasound and x-ray guidance, a small needle is used to enter the vein of the neck or leg. Small wires and catheters are used to find the gonadal vein. This vein is then blocked off from the inside, usually with metal coils and chemical agent that causes the veins to clot.
The procedure has a low risk of bleeding, infection, and damage to nearby organs. It is usually performed for outpatients, who can return home immediately afterwards.
Chronic Pelvic Pain Intervention
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Patrick Marcin, MD
Interventional Radiology (IR)