Uterine artery embolization versus hysterectomy in the treatment of symptomatic uterine fibroids (EMMY trial): peri- and postprocedural results from a randomized controlled trial

Wouter J K Hehenkamp, Nicole A Volkers, Peter F J Donderwinkel, Sjoerd de Blok, Erwin Birnie, Willem M Ankum, Jim A Reekers

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OBJECTIVE: This was a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the safety of uterine artery embolization (UAE) compared with hysterectomy.

STUDY DESIGN: Twenty-eight Dutch hospitals recruited 177 patients with symptomatic uterine fibroids and menorrhagia who were eligible for hysterectomy. Patients were randomized to UAE (n = 88) or hysterectomy (n = 89). In this paper we evaluate the peri- and postprocedural complications, length of hospital stay, unscheduled visits, and readmission rates up to 6 weeks' post-intervention. Analysis was by intention to treat.

RESULTS: Bilateral UAE failure occurred in 4 patients (4.9%). Major complications occurred in 4.9% (UAE) and 2.7% (hysterectomy) of cases (P = .68). The minor complication rate from discharge until 6 weeks after was significantly higher in the UAE group than in the hysterectomy group (58.0% vs 40.0%; RR 1.45 [1.04-2.02]; P = .024). UAE patients were more often readmitted (11.1% vs 0%; P = .003). Total length of hospital stay was significantly shorter in UAE patients (mean [SD]: 2.5 [2.7] vs 5.1 [1.3], P < .001).

CONCLUSION: UAE is a procedure similar to hysterectomy with a low major complication rate and with a reduced length of hospital stay. Higher readmission rates after UAE stress the need for careful postprocedural follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1618-29
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2005

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