Memories directly after my Uterine Fibroid Embolization

I recall nothing from the procedure. Not even leaving the Interventional Radiology Suite and returning to my room. I remember seeing the Interventional Radiologist right before he started and then I remember being back in my room.

The experience was not like the general anesthesia used during my Hysteroscopic Myomectomy. I could feel myself fading and knew exactly when I went under. I could also feel myself coming out of it after the surgery was over.

The conscious sedation was completely different. I never felt like I was out. It was more like some sort of time/location shift. One moment, I was in the procedure room. I blinked my eyes and I was then back in my room. Really weird sensation.

So, how did I feel afterward? Ugh and Ick! Yes, there was pain. I was hooked up to one of those patient-controlled analgesia pumps (PCA) that administered morphine. I had to balance my pain relief with the nausea from the drugs and the struggle made me feel like crap.


Related Posts:
How are you feeling after your Uterine Fibroid Embolization?
I’m really starting to think my wiring is kind of screwed
Two weeks after my Uterine Fibroid Embolization
Gosh… My period turned out to be a question mark!
My condition one month post-Uterine Fibroid Embolization
UPDATE: My condition two months post-Uterine Fibroid Embolization
UPDATE: My condition three months post-Uterine Fibroid Embolization
UPDATE: My condition four months post-Uterine Fibroid Embolization


65 Responses to “Memories directly after my Uterine Fibroid Embolization”

  1. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi Marva,

    Glad you found us! You have to decide if the pros of seeking treatment outweigh the cons of continuing to put up with your symptoms.

    Once it got to the point where I no longer wanted to deal with my heavy, clotty, anemia-inducing periods, I asked for help. I didn’t just want to treat my symptoms. I wanted to deal with the fibroids directly. My treatment plan started in February and didn’t end until July (3 months of Lupron shots, a Hysteroscopic Myomectomy, and the UFE). I would do it ALL again in a heartbeat. I just made a “Was it worth it?” comment in another post that I’ll quote here:

    Was it worth it to me? YES!!! My fibroid symptoms were horrible. This time last year, I thought I was going to die. The anemia from the blood loss was just that bad. I feel and look like a completely different person today. I attended a disco-themed Christmas party recently and danced so much by myself (hubby doesn’t dance) that after the party, the DJ made a comment about my moves. He said it in front of my husband and I’m still laughing about it. Oh, yeah. Treatment was definitely worth it!

  2. eyelash Says:

    I had my UFE surgery on Dec. 18 and after an ovenight stay, left the hospital feeling hopeful and just slightly fatigued. Since that time, I’ve had more bleeding than passing of clots, though I’ve had a few of those, just not that large. I think since mine were small, submucusal (?) fibroids, the pain has been minimal (or maybe that’s just my situation), but I am having a prolonged period, which is worrisome. I wouldn’t even call it a menstrual cycle, but after calling my physician’s assistant twice about my worries, she reassured me it was my period and that it would be this way for the next 2-3 months.

    It’s too early to say if I’m relieved from this surgery – but, I was at my wit’s end, too, like many of the posts have mentioned in this blog. I had severe bleeding/anemia/discomfort/embarassment for too long. I’ve also had two myomectomy surgeries. I am hopeful that this UFE procedure will prove beneficial. I asked for a three week leave from work, but I would take an extra week if possible. The surgery was not painful, for me, but the recovery has been more troublesome, if only because of the fatigue and this prolonged bleeding.

    If anyone has input or words to reassure me, I would appreciate it. Thanks for this blog/or forum, too! Much needed when many people (including myself) feel alone in this problem.

  3. eyelash Says:

    I should add that the bleeding/clots has not been heavy, just consistent. This might be my period or just general,discharge with passing clots? Not sure. I hope it eases in a few days. Peace and best wishes for the New Year, to everyone.

  4. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi eyelash,

    Glad your UFE is over and done. I know I sound like a broken record but your recovery will depend on the size, location, and number of fibroids. This will determine things such as the amount of pain you have and the amount of blood you pass. Hard to say what is “normal” because every case is a little different. The fatigue could still be an anemia issue. Mine had to be fully corrected before my UFE because I had another fibroid procedure about a month before. Not sure how yours is being addressed but that’s a possibility. Since you are recovering from a procedure, even borderline will add to your tiredness.

    Words of reassurance:
    You suffered through severe symptoms. You said “enough already” and decided to do something about it. You care enough about your health to talk to your PA about your concerns plus search online for information. You posted here. 🙂

    I cannot tell you how long your recovery will be or what will occur during the process. I can say you are definitely not alone. Call your PA again if you become overly concerned but feel free to come here and post your questions or thoughts. We’ll be here. Glad the site helps.

    Best wishes with your recovery. Have a wonderful New Year!

  5. eyelash Says:

    Hi EclecticGeek – Thanks for your reassurance and Happy New Year to you, too! 🙂 I was slightly anemic (11.1) before surgery and on extra iron (Repliva) pills, which I continue to take. Sinc the bleeding continues with some clotting, I guess this is part and parcel for recovery. I am the only one within my circle of friends/associates who has had this severe bleeding issue, so I am tired of being tired and freakish, you know?? So, thank you for your kind words. Today, I regretted the UFE surgery, because I didn’t know the cycle/bleeding issue would be prolonged – but, as you wrote, it depends on each person. In a way, I wish that I had a partial hysterectomy, to take care of it and also, because I do not necessarily want children. But, I thought the UFE would be a the best option for me now, since I’m in my late 30s. It will be a few months or more before I can say this was a success, so fingers crossed for now and I hope to see some improvement on the bleeding issue soon.

    Thanks again and best for 2007!

  6. eyelash Says:

    still not sure if this was the best choice for me – on day 13 of a very long period (?) that does not seem to improve. i have two calls into doctors today, but i feel angry and discouraged. i would suggest to everyone that they check on follow-up care and treatment after surgery. i had an excellent doctor, but feel abandoned at this point. they could be more helpful.

  7. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi eyelash,

    Sorry you are still dealing with the bleeding problems. I hope you hear from your doctor soon.

    UFE recovery is a process. For some women, it takes longer. I’ll leave a link to the post-UFE recovery thread so you can view a few more experiences:
    How are you feeling after your Uterine Fibroid Embolization?

    I know it’s frustrating but hang in there. Visit the link listed above and keep posting your concerns. There are other women going through similar things. You are not alone.

  8. tonya Says:

    I had the procedure done on November 24, 2006 and I am still not feeling like myself. The next day after the procedure I had severe cramping, I was sure that it was labor pains. I have had some lower back pain and I am taking motrin for those. I am only 5 1/2 week in though so hopefully I will start to feel better in a couple of weeks. I am sure that this is the effects from the shrinkage of the fibroids.

  9. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi tonya,

    Thanks for sharing your experience. The pain can be intense in the beginning. Sometimes it takes a little time to feel normal again but I’m happy that you seem to be over the intense pain. Please continue to post if you have questions or additional thoughts.

    I wish you the best as you continue to recover!

  10. justme Says:

    My doc has suggested UFE or a hysteroctomy, I don’t know which to choose. Is one better then the other, after listening to your post on the recovery.

  11. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi justme,

    The best treatment for you will depend on your case (size, number, and location of fibroids). All treatments have risks and benefits. I picked UFE because I didn’t want major surgery. I made sure to learn as much as I could about it. Fibroid size and location are key considerations with UFE. I was concerned about the fibroid that sat on the outside of my uterus attached by a stalk (pedunculated subserosal). The IR told me that because of the size of the stalk that one would be okay and was more concerned over two smaller ones on the inside (submucosal). He thought those two would possibly detach post-UFE, get lodged internally, and become infected. I couldn’t have the UFE until those they were “shaved down”.

    Talk to your doctor about size, location, and the possible happenings of your fibroids post-UFE. Don’t automatically assume that a less invasive procedure = shorter/easier recovery. It will depend on the fibroids. My 10-day UFE recovery was pretty easy (not much cramping or bleeding, just constipation) but for some women it is harder and takes longer.

    I have a post that talks about treatment options. There are sections on UFE and hysterectomy plus links to other posts about specific treatments:
    Just what are your uterine fibroid tumor treatment options?

    I’ll also leave the specific one for UFE:
    How are you feeling after your Uterine Fibroid Embolization?

    Keep posting if you have other questions. It’s not just you. You aren’t alone.

  12. FreddiFibroids Says:

    I had the UFE procedure on Jan. 17th, 2007, after two myomectomies, 7 years apart from each other. I’m in my early 40s.

    I thought I’d be pain free in 3 to 5 days after the procedure. In reality, I was in extreme pain every day for 8 straight days, including pain down the front of my thighs, lower back, sides and front of my abdomen. I used all of the precribed pain meds and had to contact my doctor to call in another medication. During the 8 days, I used my electric heating pad 24-hours-a-day. I experienced some mild bleeding that started 2 days after the procedure, but I’m sure that there’s more to come.

    It’s Day 9 and I finaly feel some relief from the meds. I am now only slightly uncomfortable. I still need to take Motrin a few times a day. I’m still feeling bloated and generally like I’m carrying around a bowling ball.

    On a positive note, my appetite has been cut in half. I seriously hope that the loss of appetite loss continues. Did I mention that before the UFE, I had 20 fibroids?

    I’m wondering if there’s anyone else who experienced this much pain or if there are other women with this many fibroids.

    I thank you for sharing your story and for starting this blog. It means the world to so many women, including me.

  13. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi FreddiFibroids,

    Sorry you are experiencing so much pain. The UFE procedure blocks the fibroid’s blood supply. The fibroid shrinks because it is dying. Larger fibroids or a higher number of fibroids may result in a longer recovery. To read more UFE experiences, see this post:
    How are you feeling after your Uterine Fibroid Embolization?

    Continuing on your positive note, I’ve also noticed that I eat less now post-UFE. 🙂

    Glad you found the site and it’s helpful to you! Don’t hesitate to post any other concerns you have. Take care.

    [Edited to add: I also have a post on needing multiple fibroid procedures (I needed 2). Feel free to post there as well.]

  14. jeannie Says:

    I’am in so much pain I dont know what to do! I was diagnosed with 3 golfball sized fibroid tumors my Doctor wants to give me a partial hysterectomy I’m done having childen so dont know what to do or where this horrible pain is coming from help jeannie

  15. EclecticGeek Says:

    Hi jeannie,

    I’m sorry you are in so much pain. The fibroids can cause pain if they are pressing against other organs or can cause back pain. They also can cause severe menstrual cramps.

    I have a page that talks about symptoms. I’ll also leave the one that talks about anemia in case that is a concern:

    Uterine fibroid symptoms (not my idea of fun)

    Uterine fibroid tumors and anemia?

    Here is the page on this site that talks about treatment options. It will have links to other pages where women are discussing their post-op experiences including hysterectomy:

    Just what are your uterine fibroid tumor treatment options?

    You can also check the Forum page for a list of other discussions on the site.

    You are not alone. There are other women here who are talking about the same things. Check those pages and keep posting if you have other concerns.

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