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Media Contact: Lance Skelly 15 March 2007
  lance.skelly@emory.edu    
  (404) 686-8538 ((40) 4) -686-8538   Print  | Email ]
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Fibroid Embolization at Emory Eliminates Need for Surgery
For millions of women living with painful uterine fibroids, surgical procedures, including removal of the fibroid or even hysterectomy, are becoming a thing of the past because of the increasing use of fibroid embolization treatment.

Uterine fibroids are tumors that grow in the muscular walls of the uterus. They may be as small as a pea or as large as a cantaloupe. Approximately 40 percent of women 20 years and older will develop one or more of these uterine tumors before reaching menopause. Although fibroids are usually not cancerous, up to 20 percent of women with fibroids develop symptoms that include heavy or long menstrual periods, increased menstrual cramps, pain or pressure in the pelvis or lower back, pain during intercourse, frequent urination, constipation and bloating. Fibroids that produce many of these symptoms result in more than 150,000 hysterectomies each year, which is one-third of all hysterectomies in the U.S.

According to Dr. Abbas Chamsuddin, M.D., associate professor of interventional radiology in the Emory School of Medicine, a procedure known as uterine fibroid embolization is designed to shrink the fibroid by blocking the tiny arteries that deliver blood flow to the fibroid -- literally starving it to death.

"In the past, treatment for this very painful condition has only been limited to surgery - either hysterectomy or removal of the fibroid," says Dr. Chamsuddin. "Over the last several years, embolization has emerged as a safe and highly effective treatment for fibroids, and published research reports that there is up to a 95 percent rate of success, meaning no further treatment is required."

Fibroid embolization employs the same non-surgical, minimally-invasive techniques that interventional radiologists have been using for 20 years to control pelvic bleeding. With thousands of procedures having been successfully performed worldwide, the procedure is now widely accepted in Europe and across the U.S. as a successful alternative to surgery, says Dr. Chamsuddin.

Emory will be hosting a series of free seminars on uterine fibroid embolization on the following days and times:

Thursday, March 15, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

Thursday, May 3, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

Thursday, July 12, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

For more information on treatments, appointments or seminars, please call Emory's HealthConnection line at 404/778-7777.

Dr. Chamsuddin says that during the procedure, a radiologist guides a tiny wire and catheter into the blood vessels that supply the uterus and the fibroids. Small particles are then injected to block the blood supply to the fibroids, causing them to shrink over time. After the procedure, patients may experience pain like menstrual cramps. A patient usually remains overnight in the hospital. By the following day, pain will be controlled with oral pain medications. Symptoms gradually improve, and patients may return to normal activity within a week. Follow-up visits and ultrasound imaging are used to evaluate the patient's progress and the fibroids shrinkage. The fibroids usually shrink to approximately one-half of the pre-procedure size.

"Hysterectomies and the surgical removal of fibroids are very painful both physically and emotionally, and come attached with long recovery time for this all-too common condition," says Dr. Chamsuddin. "So a procedure that is as minimally invasive and can allow a patient to engage in normal activities within a week, backed by a very high success rate is certainly beginning to catch the attention of more and more people. Women should know that they do not have to live in pain or - wait until irreparable damage is done, when they can embolize the fibroid if and when they first appear."

Media Contact: Lance Skelly 15 March 2007
  lskelly@emory.edu    
  (404) 686-8538   Print  | Email ]
Share:

del.icio.us

Fibroid Embolization at Emory Eliminates Need for Surgery
For millions of women living with painful uterine fibroids, surgical procedures, including removal of the fibroid or even hysterectomy, are becoming a thing of the past because of the increasing use of fibroid embolization treatment.

Uterine fibroids are tumors that grow in the muscular walls of the uterus. They may be as small as a pea or as large as a cantaloupe. Approximately 40 percent of women 20 years and older will develop one or more of these uterine tumors before reaching menopause. Although fibroids are usually not cancerous, up to 20 percent of women with fibroids develop symptoms that include heavy or long menstrual periods, increased menstrual cramps, pain or pressure in the pelvis or lower back, pain during intercourse, frequent urination, constipation and bloating. Fibroids that produce many of these symptoms result in more than 150,000 hysterectomies each year, which is one-third of all hysterectomies in the U.S.

According to Dr. Abbas Chamsuddin, M.D., associate professor of interventional radiology in the Emory School of Medicine, a procedure known as uterine fibroid embolization is designed to shrink the fibroid by blocking the tiny arteries that deliver blood flow to the fibroid -- literally starving it to death.

"In the past, treatment for this very painful condition has only been limited to surgery - either hysterectomy or removal of the fibroid," says Dr. Chamsuddin. "Over the last several years, embolization has emerged as a safe and highly effective treatment for fibroids, and published research reports that there is up to a 95 percent rate of success, meaning no further treatment is required."

Fibroid embolization employs the same non-surgical, minimally-invasive techniques that interventional radiologists have been using for 20 years to control pelvic bleeding. With thousands of procedures having been successfully performed worldwide, the procedure is now widely accepted in Europe and across the U.S. as a successful alternative to surgery, says Dr. Chamsuddin.

Emory will be hosting a series of free seminars on uterine fibroid embolization on the following days and times:

Thursday, March 15, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

Thursday, May 3, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

Thursday, July 12, 6:30-8 p.m. Glenn Auditorium, Emory Crawford Long Hospital 550 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

For more information on treatments, appointments or seminars, please call Emory's HealthConnection line at 404/778-7777.

Dr. Chamsuddin says that during the procedure, a radiologist guides a tiny wire and catheter into the blood vessels that supply the uterus and the fibroids. Small particles are then injected to block the blood supply to the fibroids, causing them to shrink over time. After the procedure, patients may experience pain like menstrual cramps. A patient usually remains overnight in the hospital. By the following day, pain will be controlled with oral pain medications. Symptoms gradually improve, and patients may return to normal activity within a week. Follow-up visits and ultrasound imaging are used to evaluate the patient's progress and the fibroids shrinkage. The fibroids usually shrink to approximately one-half of the pre-procedure size.

"Hysterectomies and the surgical removal of fibroids are very painful both physically and emotionally, and come attached with long recovery time for this all-too common condition," says Dr. Chamsuddin. "So a procedure that is as minimally invasive and can allow a patient to engage in normal activities within a week, backed by a very high success rate is certainly beginning to catch the attention of more and more people. Women should know that they do not have to live in pain or - wait until irreparable damage is done, when they can embolize the fibroid if and when they first appear."



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