The UFE market has decreased over the past couple of years as there has been a reduction of active marketing. Moreover, UFE must compete with a wide array of procedures available to treat heavy bleeding due to uterine fibroids. These other treatments and procedures include hysterectomy, pharmacological alternatives, global endometrial ablation, endometrial resection and other minimally invasive surgical procedures. For more price-sensitive countries, such as France, Spain, Italy and Portugal, alternative treatments present significant competition as patients and physicians look for inexpensive methods for the management or treatment of uterine fibroids. Moreover, because of the economic situation, many women are delaying surgical treatments.
Abstract Uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), also known as uterine artery embolization (UAE) is a radiology treatment for fibroids.
Fibroids, also known as myomas, are masses of muscle tissue and fiber located on the wall of the uterus that can cause heavy bleeding and pain. Fibroids depend on the uterine arteries for nourishment, and they take significant blood supply from these vessels. UFE restricts blood flow to fibroids, causing them to shrink significantly. This procedure does not involve general anesthesia and is appropriate for women who want an alternative to a myomectomy, also known as fibroidectomy. It is a much less invasive way to treat fibroids than a hysterectomy, has a much shorter recovery time and leaves almost no scarring. The effects of UFE on fertility are being researched; some results suggest that fertility after UFE is comparable to fertility after myomectomy.
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