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Virginia Interventional and Vascular Associates Offers Alternative to Hysterectomy for Uterine Fibroids

National OB-GYN Group States Uterine Artery Embolization 'Safe and Effective' for Appropriately Selected Patients

FREDERICKSBURG, Va., April 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Women with painful uterine fibroids are more likely to opt for a minimally invasive procedure over hysterectomy in the months ahead. That's the prediction of Virginia Interventional and Vascular Associates (VIVA) doctors following a bulletin on uterine artery embolization by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

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"Based on long- and short-term outcomes, uterine artery embolization is a safe and effective option for appropriately selected women who wish to retain their uteri," the practice bulletin reports. The bulletin, released in 2008, also evaluates other alternatives to hysterectomy.

Dr. R. Donald Doherty Jr. of VIVA, a group of interventional radiologists in Fredericksburg, VA, says their practice has performed uterine artery embolizations since 2001. The procedure, also known as uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), is offered primarily by interventional radiologists. Interventional radiologists apply their skills in reading medical images and performing minimally invasive procedures to diagnose and treat a variety of conditions.

"We applaud the ACOG for recognizing UFE as an effective alternative," Doherty says. "Many women have suffered from fibroids and have avoided surgical treatment because they are concerned about downtime from work, loss of income and other issues. The ACOG bulletin has opened the way for women to discuss with their OB-GYNs the treatment options that are available to them."

UFE is a minimally invasive procedure that blocks the blood supply to fibroids, causing them to shrink. It usually requires an overnight hospital stay. Most women resume light activities in a few days and the majority of women return to normal activities within seven to 10 days, according to the Society of Interventional Radiology. The society estimates that 85-90 percent of UFE patients experience significant or total improvement in pain and heavy bleeding caused by fibroids.

About VIVA

VIVA is part of Radiologic Associates of Fredericksburg. Its board-certified interventional radiologists are Dr. Michael P. McDermott, Dr. John J. McLaughlin, Dr. R. Donald Doherty Jr., and Dr. John D. Statler. VIVA doctors help diagnose and treat a variety of conditions, including uterine fibroids, spinal compression fractures, peripheral vascular disease, cancer, and varicose veins. For more information, call (540) 654-9118 or visit .

SOURCE Virginia Interventional and Vascular Associates
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