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Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jul 7, 2024.

What do I need to know about embolization?

Embolization is a procedure to create a clot, or block, in a blood vessel. This stops blood from flowing to the area. The procedure may be used to treat many conditions. It can help stop heavy bleeding (hemorrhage), or prevent an aneurysm from rupturing. An abnormal connection between arteries can be removed. Embolization can stop blood flow to a tumor, such as a uterine fibroid or a cancer tumor. Chemotherapy medicine may be given during an embolization to treat a cancer tumor. This is called chemoembolization.

How do I prepare for the procedure?

Embolization is sometimes done as an emergency procedure. This means you will not have time to prepare. For an embolization that is not an emergency, the following are general guidelines for how to prepare:

What will happen during the procedure?

What should I expect after the procedure?

What are the risks of embolization?

You may bleed more than expected or develop an infection. The area being treated may be damaged during the procedure. Your artery may be damaged from the catheter, or you may develop a blood clot. Your kidneys may be damaged from the contrast liquid. The material being put into the artery may go to the wrong place. This can stop blood flow to healthy tissue. The procedure may not work, or it may not relieve your symptoms.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.