Are you suffering from uterine fibroid symptoms like heavy periods, painful cramps, and frequent urination? If so, our specialists at USA Fibroid Centers want you to know that there’s help available. Although many women with fibroids believe that their only available treatment option is hysterectomy, this isn’t the case.
One of our primary goals is to educate women on their full range of fibroid treatment options. For most, there are two types of available treatments –– surgical or non-surgical. Although one of the best-known methods is hysterectomy, the complete surgical removal of the uterus, this technique can result in some serious and permanent health consequences. These include early menopause and infertility.
A non-surgical fibroid treatment called Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE), on the other hand, leaves your uterus intact and can retain your fertility. If you are premenopausal, you may be wondering, does UFE cause early menopause? Here’s what you need to know about uterine fibroids, UFE, and early menopause.
Can Fibroid Embolization Cause Early Menopause?
Did you know that the average age of menopause in the United States is 51? Even if you are not approaching the age of menopause, it’s still important to be aware of what it is and how it can affect your body.
Typical signs of menopause include:
- Abnormal periods
- Hot flashes
- Vaginal dryness
- Night sweats
- Issue with sleep
- Mood changes
- Weight gain
- Thinning hair
- Dry skin
If you’re already dealing with fibroid symptoms, going through early menopause after a hysterectomy can be scary. The good news is that when it comes to fibroid treatment, you don’t always need a hysterectomy to find relief.
Early Menopause is Rare with UFE Treatment
Although there is never any guarantee, Uterine Fibroid Embolization is unlikely to bring on early menopause (also known as premature ovarian failure). However, there is a very small risk of non-target embolization of the blood supply to the ovaries. If this occurs, the resulting blockage can result in abnormal functioning of the ovaries. This effect can be temporary or permanent.
Your age at the time of treatment may have an impact on your risk of early menopause after UFE. Research has shown that women older than 40 are at increased risk. We suggest that the sooner you have your symptomatic uterine fibroids treated, the less likely this will occur.
Some studies indicate that individual radiologists and the rate of injection during embolization can influence the development of early menopause after UFE. We want to assure you that our specialized interventional radiologists are top experts in the field. They possess unparalleled experience at performing successful UFE procedures in dozens of clinic locations nationwide.
The bottom line is that early menopause is an unlikely outcome of UFE. If you are concerned, you can reduce your risks by seeking expert fibroid care from one of our UFE specialists at USA Fibroid Centers.
What Else Should I Know About Fibroid Treatment?
Whether or not early menopause is a factor in your fibroid treatment decision, we believe it is important to know all the benefits and potential drawbacks of both hysterectomy and UFE. Dealing with fibroids can be scary, and it’s not always easy to figure out which treatment option will work best for you and bring you the relief you need.
Hysterectomy is the only treatment that is one hundred percent effective for permanently eliminating fibroids. However, that doesn’t mean you should immediately schedule surgery. You may wish to avoid hysterectomy because it can involve:
- A surgery of one to two hours
- General anesthesia
- Surgical risks like excessive bleeding, infection, an adverse reaction to general anesthesia, and blood clots
- A hospital stay of between one and five days
- Severe pain that requires management with prescription pain relievers
- A lengthy recovery of six to eight weeks
- The loss of your uterus
- The loss of fertility
- Early menopause
If you do decide to have a hysterectomy, you may need to take a significant amount of time off work to recover. During recovery, you will not be able to drive or lift heavy objects. You may also need assistance with childcare, household tasks, and personal care.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)
Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is a non-surgical, outpatient procedure that can shrink your fibroids and eliminate painful, uncomfortable, and inconvenient symptoms. UFE is an effective alternative to fibroid surgery, it is extremely rare for fibroids that have been treated with UFE to regrow and cause future issues.
With UFE, you can expect:
- A minimally invasive approach
- Fibroid treatment that takes only 30 to 45 minutes
- Local anesthesia and a light sedative
- The comfort of going home the same day to begin your recovery
- Less pain than hysterectomy
- A shorter recovery period of one to two weeks
- Less risk than surgery
- Future fertility
- A natural, age-appropriate onset of menopause
Keep in mind that every individual has a unique set of circumstances that can potentially affect which treatment is right for them. We recommend consulting with a fibroid specialist who can help you make the best, most informed decision.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization at USA Fibroid Centers
At USA Fibroid Centers, we understand your concerns about fibroid treatment and early menopause. Fortunately, you have options. If you are experiencing symptomatic uterine fibroids that limit your daily activities, we can help identify the best treatment for you.
Uterine Fibroid Embolization can help eliminate fibroid symptoms, retain fertility, and quickly get you back to normal life. To discover whether you are a good candidate for UFE, simply call 855.615.2555 or use our online scheduling form to make an appointment. For your safety and convenience, we also offer telemedicine consultations.