"We already know that UFE has an 85-90% success rate, offering less complications and a shorter recovery time than surgical options," Richard Shlansky-Goldberg, MD, Interventional Radiologist at Penn and Principal Investigator of this study, explains, "So in 2006, the question becomes, now that we know the procedure is effective and durable, 'Which product would be better?'"
Uterine fibroids are benign (non-cancerous) tumors of the uterus that affect an estimated 20-40% of women, and for many, cause symptoms disrupting the quality of their lives. Uterine Fibroids affect more than six million women in the U.S. each year. The exact reason uterine fibroids (the most common type of abnormal growth in the uterus) develop is unknown, but medical researchers have associated the condition with genetics and hormones. If left untreated, uterine fibroids can cause infertility.
The treatment for uterine fibroids depends upon the size and location of the fibroids and the severity of symptoms. Uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), also known as uterine artery embolization (UAE), is a minimally invasive alternative to a hysterectomy and is a proven way to treat fibroids and relieve its symptoms of heavy bleeding, pressure, pain, and excessive urination.
Interventional radiologists don't actually remove the fibroids during the UFE procedure. They shut them down and gradually shrink them, by blocking the blood supply to the fibroids. They do this by using a catheter to inject embolic agents (tiny plastic or sponge-like particles) into the artery, to "dam up" the blood flow to the fibroids.
During this trial at Penn, several researchers will utilize two different embolic agents, comparing the outcomes in patients. 24 hours after each procedure, they will conduct an MRI to see how much fibroid tissue is destroyed. They'll look again, when the patient leaves the hospital. Shlansky-Goldberg adds, "We hope to answer two questions. One - In looking at the different outcomes of each particle, does one do a more effective job of eliminating fibroids? And two -- What does the uterus look like immediately after the UFE procedure and then later, after three months?"
This is a randomized, single-center study comparing Contour SE Microspheres to Embosphere Microspheres for treating symptomatic uterine fibroids with UFE. The head-to-head study at Penn, funded by Boston Scientific, will involve 60 patients. Penn is still enrolling patients in the study.
The clinical trial is expected to last about nine months.
Dr. Richard Shlansky-Golberg has no financial interest in Boston Scientific Corporation.
To schedule an interview, please contact Susanne Hartman at 215-349-5964 or email@example.com
To learn more about uterine fibroids, go on-line to: www.pennhealth.com/int_rad/health_info/
Images and animation are available upon request.
Penn Interventional Radiologists continue to offer UFE treatment outside of this clinical trial. To learn more about Penn Medicine Interventional Radiology, visit: www.pennhealth.com/int_rad/
For more information about Boston Scientific, visit: www.bostonscientific.com.
For more information about BioSphere Medical, visit: www.biospheremed.com
PENN Medicine is a $2.9 billion enterprise dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and high-quality patient care. PENN Medicine consists of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.
Penn's School of Medicine is ranked #2 in the nation for receipt of NIH research funds; and ranked #3 in the nation in U.S. News & World Report's most recent ranking of top research-oriented medical schools. Supporting 1,400 fulltime faculty and 700 students, the School of Medicine is recognized worldwide for its superior education and training of the next generation of physician-scientists and leaders of academic medicine.
The University of Pennsylvania Health System includes three hospitals [Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, which is consistently ranked one of the nation's few "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report; Pennsylvania Hospital, the nation's first hospital; and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center]; a faculty practice plan; a primary-care provider network; two multispecialty satellite facilities; and home care and hospice.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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