Uterine artery embolization versus surgery in the treatment of symptomatic fibroids: a systematic review and metaanalysis

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2011 Oct;205(4):317.e1-18. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2011.03.016. Epub 2011 Mar 16.


Objective: To summarize the evidence on short-, mid-, and long-term results up to 5 years of uterine artery embolization in comparison to surgery.

Study design: We searched the CENTRAL, MEDLINE and EMBASE databases for randomized clinical trials comparing uterine artery embolization with hysterectomy/myomectomy in premenopausal women with heavy menstrual bleeding caused by symptomatic uterine fibroids, written from September 1995 to November 2010. Two reviewers independently assessed methodologic quality and extracted data from included trials.

Results: Four randomized controlled trials with a total of 515 patients were included. On the short-term, uterine artery embolization showed fewer blood loss, shorter hospital stay, and quicker resumption of work. Mid- and long-term results showed comparable health-related quality of life results and a higher reintervention rate in the uterine artery embolization group, whereas both groups were equally satisfied.

Conclusion: Uterine artery embolization has short-term advantages over surgery. On the mid- and long-term the benefits were similar, except for a higher reintervention rate after uterine artery embolization.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leiomyoma / surgery
  • Leiomyoma / therapy*
  • Uterine Artery Embolization*
  • Uterine Neoplasms / surgery
  • Uterine Neoplasms / therapy*