Treatments

Treatments for Pelvic Congestion Syndrome

Once a diagnosis is made, if the patient is symptomatic, an embolization should be done. Embolization is a minimally invasive procedure performed by interventional radiologists using x-ray imaging for guidance. During the outpatient procedure, the interventionalist inserts a thin catheter into a vein in the groin and guides it to the affected area using X-ray guidance. To seal the faulty, enlarged vein and relieve painful pressure, an interventional radiologist inserts tiny coils often with a sclerosing agent (the same type of material used to treat varicose veins) to close the vein. After treatment, patients can return to normal activities immediately.

  • Additional treatments are available depending on the severity of the woman’s symptoms
  • Analgesics may be prescribed to reduce the pain
  • Hormones such as birth control pills decrease a woman’s hormone level temporarily causing menstruation to stop may be helpful in controlling her symptoms
  • Surgical options include a hysterectomy with removal of ovaries, and tying off or removing the veins

Efficacy

Embolization offers a safe, effective, minimally invasive treatment option that frequently relieves patients symptoms. The procedure is very successful in blocking the abnormal blood flow. 85-95 percent of women have improvement in their symptoms after the procedure. Although women are usually improved, the veins are never normal and in some cases other pelvic veins are also affected which may require further treatment.


Meet the Vein Center Team

Northwestern Medicine Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute is a nationally recognized destination for those who require highly specialized cardiovascular care.