Uterine fibroids need treatment when they cause pain, heavy menstrual bleeding, or other symptoms or when they affect your fertility.
Medical therapy can ease pain and reduce bleeding and may help shrink large fibroids. There are several types of medications that can help. Your provider will discuss which may be appropriate for you, based on the size, number, and location of your fibroids.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)
This nonsurgical, minimally invasive procedure -- also referred to as uterine artery embolization (UAE) involves injecting a fluid called polyvinyl alcohol into the artery that supplies blood to the fibroid. The fluid blocks blood flow and the fibroid begins to shrink and die. Uterine artery embolization is performed by an interventional radiologist.
Surgery to remove fibroids is called myomectomy. The procedure leaves your uterus in place and intact.
- Hysteroscopic Myomectomy: Depending on where in your uterus your fibroids are located, your doctor may be able to remove them through your cervix.
- Abdominal Myomectomy: When your fibroids cannot be removed through your cervix, they may be removed through an incision on your abdomen. This is usually performed through an incision in the bikini area. When removing fibroids, our goal is to preserve as much healthy tissue as possible, to help you avoid fertility issues and pregnancy complications in the future.
- Laparoscopic Myomectomy: Some of our surgeons specialize in performing myomectomies through small abdominal incisions using a laparoscope -- a device with a camera at its tip -- and tiny surgical tools. In some cases, laparoscopic procedures may involve robotic technologies.
In women who don’t wish to bear children in the future, hysterectomy may be an appropriate option for symptomatic fibroids. Depending on the nature of your fibroids, you and your surgeon will decide upon the best approach. Sometimes this means an open incision in your lower abdomen. When possible, some of our surgeons use a minimally invasive approach to remove your uterus through small incisions in your abdomen. This results in less pain and a faster recovery when compared to surgeries performed with larger incisions.