Uterine artery embolization: Reduced radiation with refined technique

B. Nikolic, J. B. Spies, L. Campbell, S. M. Walsh, S. Abbara, M. J. Lundsten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: To determine the estimated absorbed ovarian dose (EAOD) and absorbed skin dose (ASD) that occurs during uterine artery embolization (UAE) using pulsed fluoroscopy and a refined procedure protocol. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The absorbed dose was measured in 20 patients who underwent UAE procedures. Radiation was limited by using low frequency pulsed fluoroscopy, bilateral catheter technique with simultaneous injections for embolization as well as pre-and postembolization exposures and focus on limitation of magnified and oblique fluoroscopy. Lithium fluoride dosimeters were placed both in the posterior vaginal fornix and on the skin at the beam entrance site. The vaginal dose was used to approximate the EAOD. Fluoroscopy time and exposures were recorded. The mean values for all patients were calculated and compared to our previous results obtained with conventional fluoroscopy and to threshold doses for the induction of deterministic skin injury. RESULTS: Mean fluoroscopy time was 10.95 min. (range 6-21.3 min.) and the mean number of angiographic exposures was 20.9 (range 14-53). The mean EAOD was 9.5 cGy (range 2.21-23.21 cGy) and the mean ASD was 47.69 cGy (range 10.83-110.14 cGy). This compares to previous results with non-pulsed fluoroscopy of an EAOD of 22.34 cGy (range 4.25-65.08 cGy) and an ASD of 162.32 cGy (range 66.01-303.89 cGy) as well as threshold doses for induction of deterministic radiation injury to the skin (400-500 cGy). CONCLUSION: When pulsed fluoroscopy is used with emphasis on dose reduction techniques, the EAOD and ASD can be substantially reduced to less than 1/2 (P = .017) and 1/3 (P < .0001) when compared to UAE performed with nonpulsed fluoroscopy. These radiation reduction tools should therefore be applied whenever possible.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-44
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Issue number1I
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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