Management of uterine fibroids: A focus on uterine-sparing interventional techniques

James E. Silberzweig, Daniel K. Powell, Alan H. Matsumoto, James B. Spies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Uterine fibroids occur in approximately 50% of women over the age of 40 years, and an estimated 50% of those are symptomatic. Menorrhagia is the most common symptom and the primary indication for treatment, although bulk symptoms often occur and can be treated. Pharmacotherapy is typically inadequate unless it can be expected to successfully bridge to menopause or allow for a less-invasive intervention. However, hormonal therapies have risks. Hysterectomy is still the most commonly performed procedure for symptomatic fibroids and has the lowest rate of reintervention (compared with myomectomy or uterine artery embolization [UAE]), but rates of more serious complications are higher and patient satisfaction and ability to return to normal activities may also be less favorable. Myomectomy is not necessarily less morbid than hysterectomy and may have a greater failure rate than UAE. Techniques and devices vary with little standardization, and operator experience is crucial to success. The largest studies of UAE show very low rates of serious complications and rapid recovery. UAE significantly improves symptoms related to uterine fibroids in 85%-90% of patients. Herein, this article will discuss the nature of fibroids and their diagnosis, pharmacotherapy, surgical treatment, and nonsurgical interventional treatment, including UAE and magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)675-692
Number of pages18
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes


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