PURPOSE: To review the incidence of ovarian collateral supply to uterine fibroids as demonstrated by nonselective abdominal aortography before uterine artery embolization (UAE) and to evaluate the effect of such visualization on interventional management. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The aortograms of 51 consecutive patients (mean age, 42.4 y; range, 30-53 y) undergoing UAE for symptomatic uterine fibroids were reviewed retrospectively for the visualization of ovarian arteries extending into the pelvis. If ovarian arteries were visualized, their size relative to the ipsilateral external iliac artery was measured. Arteries believed large enough to represent a significant blood supply to the uterine fibroids were further evaluated after UAE to determine whether flow persisted. RESULTS: In 13 of 51 patients (25%), a total of 18 ovarian arteries were identified. They were bilateral in five patients and unilateral in eight. Their sizes relative to the ipsilateral external iliac artery ranged from 8% to 57% (mean, 26%). Eight ovarian arteries with a relative size ≥25% were further evaluated. Five of the eight (62.5%) were not visible after UAE. Of the three persistent ovarian collateral arteries, two were successfully embolized. The patient with the untreated collateral artery experienced persistent menorrhagia. CONCLUSION: Preembolization aortography with the catheter tip at level of the renal arteries demonstrated ovarian collateral arteries in 25% of patients with uterine fibroids. However, their detection influenced treatment in only 6% of the reported cases.
- Uterine arteries, embolization
- Uterus, neoplasms
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine