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September 20, 2017  
COMMUNITY: Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Fibroids1: What are the options for women suffering symptoms from fibroids?
    Dr. James Newman: Well the classic one that most patients are hoping to avoid when they come see us is hysterectomy. That is very reliable in relieving the symptoms and the fibroid problem. Removing the uterus essentially eliminates the problem. However a hysterectomy is not something that most people say, "Wonderful, I'm getting a hysterectomy." It's a big decision. It's a tremendously well documented procedure - 200,000 hysterectomies every year in the United States, approximately. However, our patients come to us because they're looking for an alternative. Other surgical options include myomectomy in selected patients. Myomectomy is removal of individual fibroids while preserving the uterus. In many cases this is possible but there are a large number of patients for whom it's not. Patients who have a dozen fibroids or more it's simply not practical. Generally if there are three or four or more it's going to really require an expert. Also there are certain locations on the uterus that require a more complex myomectomy. Many myoectomies can be done laparoscopically but there are some that are technically very difficult. Also, with any myomectomy the patient has to be aware that in certain situations if there is heavy bleeding the procedure may be converted to a hysterectomy.
    Dr. Richard Reed: There are four options: 1. To do nothing. 2. Hormonal treatment. This treatment is temporary and can cause menopausal symptoms. 3. Surgical options: Myomectomy or hysterectomy. These treatments require general anesthesia, a four-night hospital stay, a long recovery (6 to 12 weeks), and are associated with a 20  25 percent incidence of complications. 4. Uterine Fibroid Embolization. This less invasive alternative does not need general anesthesia and can be done as an outpatient or with an overnight stay. Most patients are back to full activity in one week.
    Dr. James Newman: Well the classic one that most patients are hoping to avoid when they come see us is hysterectomy. That is very reliable in relieving the symptoms and the fibroid problem. Removing the uterus essentially eliminates the problem. However a hysterectomy is not something that most people say, "Wonderful, I'm getting a hysterectomy." It's a big decision. It's a tremendously well documented procedure - 200,000 hysterectomies every year in the United States, approximately. However, our patients come to us because they're looking for an alternative. Other surgical options include myomectomy in selected patients. Myomectomy is removal of individual fibroids while preserving the uterus. In many cases this is possible but there are a large number of patients for whom it's not. Patients who have a dozen fibroids or more it's simply not practical. Generally if there are three or four or more it's going to really require an expert. Also there are certain locations on the uterus that require a more complex myomectomy. Many myoectomies can be done laparoscopically but there are some that are technically very difficult. Also, with any myomectomy the patient has to be aware that in certain situations if there is heavy bleeding the procedure may be converted to a hysterectomy.
    Dr. Richard Reed: There are four options: 1. To do nothing. 2. Hormonal treatment. This treatment is temporary and can cause menopausal symptoms. 3. Surgical options: Myomectomy or hysterectomy. These treatments require general anesthesia, a four-night hospital stay, a long recovery (6 to 12 weeks), and are associated with a 20  25 percent incidence of complications. 4. Uterine Fibroid Embolization. This less invasive alternative does not need general anesthesia and can be done as an outpatient or with an overnight stay. Most patients are back to full activity in one week.
    Dr. James Newman

    Dr. James Newman


    James S. Newman, M.D., Ph.D., graduated from Dartmouth College and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, earning the M.D. and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering. Dr. Newman pursued residency programs at Cleveland Metropolitan General Hospital and the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology in St. Louis, then fellowship training in Interventional Radiology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, serving on the faculty at Johns Hopkins until 1991. He returned to Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center, serving as Chief of Interventional Radiology there for eight years, before joining the Cleveland Clinic in 1999.
    Dr. Newman's clinical and research interests include TIPS, portal hypertension procedures, uterine artery embolization for fibroids, and new approaches to improving patient comfort during and after procedures.

    Dr. Richard Reed

    Dr. Richard Reed


    Dr. Richard Reed is an interventional radiologist currently working at the Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, California. Dr. Reed is also a Clinical Assistant Professor of Radiology at the University of Southern California, School of Medicine and is very active in the medical community, such as his participation in the National Uterine Fibroid Embolization Task Force. Dr. Reed advocates for the public awareness of interventional radiology, and he is working towards a future where women know all of their options in dealing with symptomatic fibroids. We are honored to present Fibroids1 readers with an interview from Dr. Reed.

    Dr. James Newman

    Dr. James Newman


    James S. Newman, M.D., Ph.D., graduated from Dartmouth College and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, earning the M.D. and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering. Dr. Newman pursued residency programs at Cleveland Metropolitan General Hospital and the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology in St. Louis, then fellowship training in Interventional Radiology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, serving on the faculty at Johns Hopkins until 1991. He returned to Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center, serving as Chief of Interventional Radiology there for eight years, before joining the Cleveland Clinic in 1999.
    Dr. Newman's clinical and research interests include TIPS, portal hypertension procedures, uterine artery embolization for fibroids, and new approaches to improving patient comfort during and after procedures.

    Dr. Richard Reed

    Dr. Richard Reed


    Dr. Richard Reed is an interventional radiologist currently working at the Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, California. Dr. Reed is also a Clinical Assistant Professor of Radiology at the University of Southern California, School of Medicine and is very active in the medical community, such as his participation in the National Uterine Fibroid Embolization Task Force. Dr. Reed advocates for the public awareness of interventional radiology, and he is working towards a future where women know all of their options in dealing with symptomatic fibroids. We are honored to present Fibroids1 readers with an interview from Dr. Reed.

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