Purpose: The use of superselective uterine fibroid embolization (SUFE) requires imaging techniques that can be used to verify the success of the procedure. The purpose of our study was to analyze the potential value of pre- and post-treatment contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (CEUS) for assessing the outcome of SUFE and for posttreatment follow-up. Materials and methods: We studied twelve women undergoing SUFE for uterine fibroids. In those with multiple fibroids, only the three largest were considered in this study. A total of 21 lesions (size range 3.5-9.0 cm, mean 5.2 cm) were examined. Each myoma was examined immediately before and after SUFE (while the patient was still in the angiography room) with transabdominal CEUS performed after intravenous administration of a single bolus of contrast agent. The follow-up protocol included CEUS evaluation one month after treatment and CEUS plus dynamic magnetic resonance (MR) studies six months after treatment. Results: In 20/21 cases, postembolization CEUS revealed total fibroid devascularization. The remaining lesion (in a woman with multiple lesions) showed persistent vascularization after SUFE. These findings were all consistent with angiographic data. No recurrences were observed during the six-month follow-up. One patient reported the reappearance of symptoms 18 months after SUFE, and CEUS showed the persistence of intralesional vascularization. Conclusions: CEUS is effective for assessing the completeness of vascular occlusion following SUFE for uterine fibroids. CEUS findings correlate with clinical results observed one and six months after treatment. Compared with dynamic MR, CEUS is reliable and cost-effective.
- Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography
- Therapeutic embolization
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Internal Medicine