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Fewer Complications Seen With Uterine Fibroid Embolization

WEDNESDAY, March 27, 2019 -- Uterine artery embolization (UAE) and myomectomy are both useful for treatment of symptomatic uterine fibroids, but UAE offers fewer postprocedural complications, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Society of Interventional Radiology, held from March 23 to 28 in Austin, Texas.

Jemianne Bautista-Jia, M.D., from Kaiser Permanente Southern California in Los Angeles, and colleagues compared the rate of secondary interventions following UAE and myomectomy for treatment of symptomatic uterine fibroids in a retrospective cohort study. Data were included for 950 patients (475 in each treatment arm).

The researchers found that compared with the UAE group, patients in the myomectomy group had a higher rate of postprocedural complications, including a significantly higher rate of blood transfusion (2.9 versus 1.1 percent; P = 0.04). There was no statistically significant difference between the groups in the rate of secondary interventions (8.6 and 9.9 percent in the UAE and myomectomy groups, respectively; P = 0.5). At one year following the initial procedure, both groups demonstrated a significant increase in hemoglobin, with mean differences of 2.5 and 1.9 g/dL in the UAE and myomectomy groups, respectively (both P < 0.01).

"Women have options for treating their uterine fibroids," Bautista-Jia said in a statement. "Uterine fibroid embolization and myomectomy are procedures with similar efficacy and durability for treating fibroids, but uterine fibroid embolization has fewer complications and shorter hospital stay."

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Posted: March 2019

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