Many medical practitioners are aware that Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is an effective non-surgical treatment option for women with symptomatic fibroids who are not candidates for a hysterectomy or myomectomy. However, it is less commonly known that there are pre-surgical advantages to the UFE procedure. For patients who are eligible for these surgeries but may face problems in the operating room, UFE is a viable consideration.
As a physician, Suzanne Slonim, MD understands you want your patients to experience a seamless surgery. She invites you to consider this data if you have not previously recommended UFE for pre-surgical purposes in advance of a hysterectomy or myomectomy.
A few interesting facts about UFE as a pre-surgical option
- Reduces blood loss during a usually bloody procedure
- Can help prevent blood transfusions
- Benefits patients who are anemic
- Reduces size of fibroids and uterus
At Fibroid Institute Dallas, we understand that a hysterectomy or myomectomy is the recommended treatment for many women with painful or symptomatic uterine fibroids. More than 600,000 hysterectomies and 30,000 myomectomies are performed in the United States annually. With a hysterectomy, the uterus is removed. With a myomectomy, the uterus is saved. Regardless of which option you recommend, both are invasive and bloody operations that may require blood transfusions to achieve a successful outcome for your patient.
Research is limited on exactly how much blood is lost during these procedures. Compounding this issue are the uterine fibroids themselves, which as you know, rely on a healthy blood supply to grow. If a patient has multiple large fibroids in and around the uterus, this creates a more technically challenging and bloody procedure.
Additional complications that can arise from such a technically challenging case include:
- An injury to the bowel or bladder
- Blood clots (deep vein thrombosis)
Many doctors today refer their patients for pre-surgical UFE prior to performing hysterectomy or myomectomy to make removal a safer process. This is because with a UFE procedure before a hysterectomy or myomectomy, blood flow to the fibroids is blocked. In addition, pre-surgical UFE will reduce the size of fibroids potentially allowing for a laparoscopic hysterectomy in patients that would otherwise have an open hysterectomy. Dr. Slonim, an experienced interventional radiologist inserts a small catheter into the radial artery and advances it to the location of the fibroids. She then injects small particles, causing the fibroids to shrink and die.
With uterine fibroids no longer creating added chaos for the surgery, you can do your job easier.
- Pre-hysterectomy — Surgery within five days of UFE for minimum blood loss. Alternatively, doctors should expect to delay surgery 3-6 months to allow enough time for the maximum shrinking of fibroids.
- Pre-myomectomy — Surgery within five days of UFE procedure to minimize blood loss and maximize technical ease.
Indications for UFE
UFE has come a long way. Rather than a hospital stay, UFE is now an outpatient procedure. It is also performed by accessing the radial artery, which requires a small wrist puncture rather than an abdominal incision. UFE prepares patients for hysterectomy or myomectomy and has a high rate of success. Based on Dr. Slonim’s extensive experience, her pain management algorithm is customized for each patient. Dr. Slonim is available 24/7 to manage a patient’s discomfort.
For your patient, additional advantages of UFE as a pre-surgical option include:
- Recovery time of about a week
- No hospital stay
- Procedure is typically completed in under an hour
- Painful fibroid symptoms are lessened
- No scarring
- Can be performed under local anesthesia or moderate sedation
Suzanne Slonim, MD created Fibroid Institute Dallas with your fibroid patient in mind. A board-certified interventional radiologist for 25 years, she has performed over 30,000 procedures. She is highly rated by patients with five-star reviews. She is voted D Magazine’s top doctor in her category by other doctors. She is a Dallas Business Journal’s 2020 Women in Business award honoree. And, Dr. Slonim is available to partner with you on your challenging fibroid cases.
In the first year of her own practice, about 10 percent of Dr. Slonim’s clients came through referrals from other doctors. Now, as her work has been recognized by area gynecologists, about 60 percent are referrals.
Contact Fibroid Institute Dallas to Learn More
Request a session with our VP of Marketing and Business Development, Stacey West. You will receive an in-person visit about the benefits of UFE for your patients as well as a physician packet with additional information for you and your patients. This includes patient supplies, brochures, FAQs, referral information, and more.
Fibroid Institute Dallas serves the DFW area including Garland, Mesquite, Richardson, Addison, Carrollton, Plano, Allen, Dallas, Duncanville, DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Lancaster, Cockrell Hill, Grand Prairie, Arlington, Hutchins, Irving, Highland Park, University Park, Park Cities, and all of North Texas.