Uterine Artery Embolisation for Fibroids and Adenomyosis

(Blocking abnormal artery for Fibroids and Adenomyosis)

Summary

Fibroids are growths that develop in the muscular wall of the uterus (womb). They can cause a number of symptoms, usually related to periods or if the fibroids are large, pressure and are also associated with infertility and miscarriages. Fibroid embolisation (also known as uterine artery embolisation) is a minimally invasive procedure that blocks the arteries that supply blood to the fibroids, causing the fibroids to shrink. The uterus has the ability to develop a further blood supply, so is not seriously affected. Embolisation shrinks the fibroids by about half and this usually shows an improvement in symptoms relating to the size of the fibroids or pressure. Symptoms relating to fibroids improve after the procedure in 8 to 9 out of 10 women. Unlike other treatments for fibroids, embolisation treats all the fibroids in a woman’s uterus. It is very rare for fibroids to grow back after the procedure.

More recently, uterine artery embolisation has also been used to treat a condition called adenomyosis. Adenomyosis is a benign condition characterised by the presence of ectopic endometrial glands and stroma within the myometrium. It frequently occurs coincidentally with fibroids.

  • Arranging your Treatment

    Before going ahead with this treatment, you will need to have an initial consultation with a specialist Consultant to go through your medical history and diagnosis. At this appointment, your consultant will confirm the exact treatment you require.
    If you would like to have an initial consultation, you can call us and we can help you find the consultant best for you.

    Alternatively, if you have already been diagnosed as needing a particular operation or treatment, our Reservations team can give you a guide price for this to be carried out at KIMS Hospital and book an appointment for you to meet a consultant.
    Call our Reservations team on +44 (0) 1622 237 727 or email reservations@kims.org.uk.

  • Paying for your Treatment

    You can be treated at KIMS by using your private medical insurance or by paying for yourself.

    If you have private medical insurance, you will need to contact your insurer to ensure you are covered for the initial consultation prior to making an appointment and obtain an authorisation number. The insurance company will then need to be advised if you require further treatment. The insurance company usually settles bills on your behalf.
    If you are paying for your own treatment, you will need to pay for an initial consultation.

    This will be confirmed at the time of booking but is typically £150-£250. You will also need to pay for any associated diagnostic tests your consultant recommends (for example x-rays and blood tests).

    Following this consultation, if you don’t need any further treatment or if you decide paying for yourself isn’t the right option, there is no commitment to proceed further.
    If you require the operation or procedure to be carried out, you will receive a quote for your treatment. In most case this will be the fixed price package quoted on this website. If this quote is different for any reason, we will provide an explanation (see what’s included below). This quote is also subject to pre-assessment checks prior to your admission to hospital.

    Payment is required 7 days prior to admission.

A fine, flexible, plastic tube about as thick as a spaghetti strand (catheter) is inserted into an artery in your groin. Using x-ray monitoring to check its position, the radiologist guides the catheter into both your uterine arteries (right and left). Only when the catheter is precisely positioned does the radiologist inject fluid, containing tiny particles, through the catheter. This flows into the uterine arteries and blocks them off.  Over many years, the particles have not shown any harmful effects. The procedure itself takes up to one hour and a half. Once the embolisation is completed, the catheter is taken out and the radiologist presses on the puncture site in your groin for about ten minutes to stop bleeding. You do not need any stitches and there will not be a scar. You will need to stay in hospital overnight and you can usually go home the next day.

To find out more

If you would like to come to KIMS contact our Imaging team on +44 (0)1622 237 640 or email diagnostics@kims.org.uk  

Our Consultants

  • Dr Aidan Shaw

    FRCR (Interventional Radiology), MRCS, BMBS, BMMedSci

    • Uterine Artery Embolisation for Fibroids and Adenomyosis