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Here's What to Expect after UFE

Posted on May 20, 2024

Recently, influencer Miss Cara Maria took to Instagram with the White Dress Project to discuss her experience after Uterine Fibroid Embolization, or UFE. (The White Dress Project—established by Tanika Gray Valburn—aims to spread fibroid awareness to help women suffering from fibroid symptoms find enough relief to feel comfortable wearing a white dress all month long.)

Now, there are multiple treatment options if you need fibroid relief. And, for women who are considering UFE in Dallas, you may want to know what to expect after UFE, especially in the first few weeks and months. So, to help you properly prepare for your procedure, we're devoting today's post to sharing Cara's first hand account of life post-UFE.

A screenshot of Miss Cara Maria discussing her experience 1.5 months after undergoing UFE treatment for fibroids

What to Expect After UFE: Real Life Stories

In this Instagram video, Care explains that she had UFE treatment 1.5 months before posting this video, because she had a 16 cm uterine fibroid. And, with that large tumor, she experienced uterine enlargement that often led people to ask if she was pregnant.

Initially, her doctor wanted to stop fibroid growth by putting her on menopause-inducing hormones to keep the tumor from growing larger, followed by myomectomy surgery. Scared of the procedure, she researched less invasive options, and was pleased to discover that she was a UFE candidate.

During her research, Cara learned that UFE shrinks fibroid tumors by reducing blood flow to the arteries that feed them, without impacting blood flow in any other arteries. In turn, the fibroids shrink over the course of 3 months to 1 year following the procedure. Best of all, says Cara, she was excited to learn that she would be “in and out, with no long recovery period” after UFE. And, fairly soon after her procedure, she could already notice a difference in the burden of her fibroid symptoms.

What to Expect The First Week After UFE: Fast Recovery, With Some Normal Discomfort

Cara says her UFE procedure happened on a Monday, and the first few days were “brutal,” mostly, she because she admitted to skipping out on her prescribed pain medication. (She also had painful gas after the procedure.) But this normal discomfort was short-lived. And, by Friday, she felt much better, experiencing a much faster recovery than if she'd had surgery.

A week later, she resumed exercise, while listening to her body and “taking it easy” for a few more weeks. But at the 1.5 month post-UFE mark, she says, “I’m doing amazing. I feel great.” Now, she's slowing noting that feelings of bloating and fullness are going away. She does still have some bleeding, and she wears a tampon each day to prevent leaking, but her flow is less than that of a normal cycle. Also, she is aware that this flow if caused by a ‘dying off’ fibroid, and is a normal effect of UFE in the first 3 months after the procedure.

But what about fibroid shrinkage? As Cara posted her story, her tumor was still actively shrinking, so she couldn't yet see a major visual difference in her body. Now, in our office, after UFE, we set patient-reported improvement as our primary goal. And Cara says that she can already feel a major improvement in her symptoms, even though she knows the tumor is going to keep shrinking for some time. In fact, her follow up scan is not scheduled until 6 months after the UFE procedure, a point at which she can expect to see a tumor that’s drastically reduced in size.

Are you like Cara, and seeking fibroid relief that doesn't involve invasive surgery? Our fibroid specialists in Dallas are ready to review your options and help decide if UFE is right for you. Click here to request a consultation.

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