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If you are considering UFE, you may be concerned how the procedure will affect your chances of having a baby afterward. The answer is that having a healthy pregnancy is possible after UFE. In fact, for many women, UFE may be a fertility-restoring procedure.

Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is a safe, minimally invasive alternative to surgery to treat the symptoms of uterine fibroids. The procedure blocks the blood flow to the fibroids, causing them to shrink. The advantages of UFE are that it’s typically an outpatient procedure, there is no general anesthesia, the recovery time is only a week, and the uterus is preserved.

“New studies continue to show encouraging results for women who want to get pregnant following UFE,” ​says Dr. Varma.

Multiple studies have been published on fertility around the world looking back at patients who have had fibroid embolization. These include studies in the British Journal of Radiology, American Journal of Radiology, as well as Radiology. These have shown that the frequency of complications during pregnancy and delivery among women who had UFE was not significantly different from those women without fibroids. Additionally, the complication rates were much lower in comparison to women with fibroids who were treated with procedures other than UFE or had no other treatment at all. In general, we are finding that the overall success and complication rate of pregnancy among women in the same age group are similar. Women who undergo UFE can start trying to conceive after the 3-month follow-up appointment. Pregnancy after UFE is typically full-term and delivered vaginally. .

Uterine fibroids are the most common tumors within a woman’s reproductive system, with more than 35 million women experiencing the pain and symptoms that may negatively affect their quality of life. Fibroids are also the most common reason for hysterectomies in the U.S. With UFE, the treatment destroys the fibroids, but not the dream of becoming pregnant since UFE preserves the uterus.

Of course , every patient is unique, and circumstances are different. Our expert Interventional Radiologists will help you determine if UFE is the right treatment option for you. Understanding the treatment options available, along with the risks and benefits, can help you to make the correct choice for your own symptoms and lifestyle.

Dr. Jay Varma
About the Author

Dr. Jay Varma joined Fairfax Radiology in 2006 after working as an interventional radiologist at the Washington Hospital Center for four years. In addition to his expertise in minimally invasive vein treatments for varicose veins and spider veins, he brings his special experience in uterine fibroid embolization to Fairfax Vein Center. He is co-founder of the Uterine Fibroid Center of Excellence in Washington, DC, and regularly lectures and appears as a media expert on the subject of minimally invasive therapies.