Maria Johnson was tired all the time. “I just didn’t have any energy,” said the 44-year-old insurance recovery specialist. “I discovered that I had uterine fibroids about 15 years ago. On the advice of my doctors we kept tabs on them through regular ultrasounds.” Over time those fibroids grew, some into the size of a cantaloupe. “I was experiencing heavy cramping and bleeding, plus I was just so tired,” Johnson said. “It was time to do something.”
Fibroids are benign (noncancerous) tumors of the uterus that usually do not cause symptoms. However, depending on the number, size and location, they can cause complications such as those experienced by Johnson.
Johnson’s primary care physician and her gynecologist suggested a hysterectomy as the best option to her uterine fibroid problem, but she was opposed. “I am a breast cancer survivor. I went through a radical mastectomy, and I just didn’t want to go through another major procedure,” she said. That is when a friend told her about uterine fibroid embolization (UFE).