Fibroid Treatment Options
When faced with fibroids, it’s important to weigh your options before talking to your doctor as not all doctors perform all procedures. You can learn about the range of options available to you below.
- Medications: for uterine fibroid target hormones that regulate your menstrual cycle, treating symptoms such as heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pressure. They don’t eliminate fibroids, but may shrink them.
- Laparoscopic Radiofrequency Ablation (Lap-RFA):
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The Acessa procedure, under ultrasound guidance, treats each fibroid individually by applying energy through small needle arrays. The surrounding tissue is not damaged. Over time, the treated fibroids shrink and may become completely reabsorbed by the body. Acessa is a minimally invasive treatment option and patients return to normal activity on an average of 3-5 days.
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- Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE):
An interventional radiologist uses a catheter to deliver small particles to block the blood supply to the uterine body. The fibroids then shrink and die. Patients usually spend one night in the hospital for pain control post-operatively, and recover in an average of 7-10 days.
- Myomectomy: A procedure in which uterine fibroids are surgically removed from the uterus. Myomectomies can be performed laparoscopically or as open abdominal surgery. Recovery times average 2-6 weeks, depending on the surgical approach. Women who want to retain the option of bearing children can choose to have a myomectomy done instead of a hysterectomy.
- Hysterectomy: A surgery where all of part of the woman’s uterus is removed. It is the only completely curative procedure for fibroids. Hysterectomies are performed via laparoscopic or surgical techniques. Average recovery time is 4-6 weeks, and is the most invasive of all fibroid treatments.