Microwave Endometrial Ablation
Microwave endometrial ablation is a short, minimally invasive and effective treatment for periods that are abnormally heavy or have prolonged bleeding.
What is a microwave endometrial ablation?
A microwave endometrial ablation (MEA) is a quick and straightforward outpatient or day-case surgical treatment. It destroys a thin layer of your uterus (womb) lining with the aim to reduce period bleeding to normal or lighter levels.
MEA involves inserting a special probe into your womb through your cervix. Your womb will be widened to allow the probe to enter. The probe applies microwave energy to your womb lining that heats the endometrial tissue and destroys it. The procedure usually only takes a few minutes to perform.
Why might I need an endometrial ablation?
You might need an endometrial ablation if you have heavy periods, called menorrhagia. Endometrial ablation is usually offered if medication or an intrauterine device (IUD) to treat your heavy bleeding has not worked.
Can I still become pregnant after endometrial ablation?
Whilst your chances of pregnancy are reduced after an endometrial ablation procedure, it is still possible to become pregnant.
Pregnancy following endometrial ablation is dangerous for both the mother and the foetus. It includes a greatly increased risk of miscarriage. If you want to have a baby in the future, you should not have this procedure.
You should use birth control if you have an endometrial ablation until after menopause. Your doctor will discuss this further with you. Sterilisation is often a good option to prevent pregnancy after endometrial ablation.
How do you prepare for a microwave endometrial ablation?
You can prepare for your microwave endometrial ablation by talking to your gynaecologist about the procedure and its risks and benefits.
If you have an intrauterine device (IUD), it must be removed.
You need to ensure you are not pregnant before your endometrial ablation.
Your doctor might also check your womb for cancer.
They may also perform a hysteroscopy or ultrasound to check that your womb is the right size and shape for this procedure.
You will be given a local or general anaesthetic before the procedure.
What are the costs of a microwave endometrial ablation?
The cost of a microwave endometrial ablation will depend on your Ramsay hospital of choice.
You will receive a formal quotation price for your MEA procedure following a consultation with one of our expert gynaecologists. This formal quote for your surgery will be valid for 60 days.
Ramsay is recognised by all major medical insurers. MEA procedures are covered by most medical insurance policies. We advise you to obtain written authorisation from your insurance provider before your procedure.
We have a number of finance options if you are paying for your endometrial ablation yourself. These include interest-free finance with no deposit and monthly instalments at 0% interest, all-inclusive Total Care where you make a one-off payment at a pre-agreed price, or pay as you go that offers a flexible funding option.
What is the recovery process after microwave endometrial ablation?
It may take a few days for you to recover from your microwave endometrial ablation.
You might have some minor side effects following your MEA procedure including:
- Cramping – menstrual-like cramps that last for a few days. Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol can help ease this.
- Vaginal discharge – a watery discharge mixed with blood, like a light period, may occur for a few weeks. Use sanitary towels and not tampons until the bleeding stops. Do not have sex until the discharge stops and you feel ready.
- Frequent urination – you may need to wee more often in the first 24 hours after your procedure.
Your gynaecologist will advise you on when you can exercise, go back to work and resume your normal activities. This is typically within a day or two.
You will have a follow-up appointment to check your progress.
Most women will have lighter periods after an MEA. Some will stop having periods altogether. It may take several months before you experience the full effects of ablation.
Microwave Endometrial Ablation at Ramsay Health Care
Microwave endometrial ablation and other endometrial ablation methods are common practices at Ramsay Health Care. They are performed by our experienced gynaecologists at convenient appointments and without waiting.
Your consultant will discuss fully the procedure including its benefits and risks so that you are fully informed. They will quickly, sensitively and skilfully perform your microwave endometrial ablation so that you can be relieved of your heavy period bleeding and its related problems of fatigue, anaemia, social embarrassment and restricted activity.