Compare Fibroid Treatments
At The Fibroid Treatment Center, our mission is to empower women by preventing hysterectomy and provide alterative choices to hysterectomy that allow women to return to life sooner and in better health! That's the goal for all women at The Fibroid Treatment Center!
Below is a comparison between uterine fibroid embolization (UFE, UAE), minimally invasive myomectomy (fibroid removal), and hysterectomy. UFE and Robotic surgery each have their advantages and disadvantages which should be discussed with a specialist at The Fibroid Treatment Center.
As discussed on our Myomectomy page, the FDA has banned the use of equipment needed to perform robotic or laparoscopic myomectomy due to a risk of spreading cancer within a womans abdomen. Therefore, no fibroid specialists in the country are performing minimally invasive myomectomy at this time. Open surgery with myomectomy can still be safely performed.
|Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE, UAE)||Minimally Invasive Myomectomy||Hysterectomy|
|Approved by the FDA for over 20 years||FDA has banned the use of the morcellator, required for myomectomy||Is one of the oldest, and most basic methods of removing fibroids|
|Preserves the entire uterus and ovaries||Preserves the entire uterus and ovaries||Removes the entire uterus and often the ovaries|
|Has been performed by advanced doctors for about 10 years||Utilizes the newest advanced technology of minimally invasive surgery||Is one of the oldest, and most basic methods of treating fibroids|
|Requires advanced fellowship training to perform||Requires advanced fellowship training to perform||Often performed by physicians who have have no advanced fibroid training|
|Is always outpatient, requiring no hospital stay||Can usually be done as an outpatient depending on size of fibroid||Usually requires hospitalization for 3-4 days|
|Requires MRI prior to treatment||Also requires MRI prior to treatment||No imaging is required because entire uterus is removed|
|Procedure is performed at The Fibroid Treatment Center||Due to the equipment required, procedure is performed at an outside center or hospital||Must be performed at the hospital because patients are kept overnight for 3-4 days|
|Risks of complications are minimal. Pain and nausia is expected, and managed with oral medications||With minimally invasive surgery, complications are minimized and pain is less than traditional surgical procedures||Complications include infections, internal organ injury, post-operative bleeding, large scars and hernias|
|Basic pre-procedure workup is required||Occasionally requires more advanced workup because general anesthesia is used||Requires advanced workup because general anesthesia is used and due to the size of the surgery|
|Small 2mm puncture in the groin area||4-5 small 0.5-1.0cm incisions on the abdomen||Large incision in the abdomen and muscle are split apart to remove the uterus|
|Can be done under local anesthesia with sedation||Requires complete general anesthesia||Requires complete general anesthesia|
|Can take several months for symptoms to regress||Fibroid symptoms resolve more quickly since fibroid is removed||Fibroid symptoms are gone immediately because uterus is removed|
|Recovery is minimal and is at home for several days||Recovery is minimal and is at home with light activity for several days||Requires hospitalization for 3-4 days and can take 6-8 weeks for full recovery|
|Retreatment is rarely required||Small portion of patients may have fibroids return requiring additional treatment||Fibroids to not return since uterus has been removed|
|No hormone therapies are required after surgery||No hormone therapies are required after surgery||Can require post surgery hormone replacement if the ovaries are removed|
|Not recommended for women who want to become pregant in the future||Can preserve a womens chance of becoming pregnant in the future||Only performed for women who do not want children in the future|
|Patients can experience nausia and cramping as a side effect of the embolization||After several hours of recovery, patients may have mild to moderate pain||Patients are bed ridden for at least 1-2 days, then go through a prolonged 1-2 month recovery|
|Post procedure side effects managed with oral nausia and pain medications||Post procedure pain is managed with oral pain medications||Patients are required to be hospitalized for several days due to pain and the risks of complications|
We encourage women to schedule an initial consultation or a second opinion with us at The Fibroid Treatment Center. Direct patient self-referrals are accepted. For women who have already been evaluated by their OB/GYN, Dr. Harris is happy to offer a second opinion or work closely with each patients' Gynecologist prior to surgery or hysterectomy.