A New Approach to Fibroid Management
A team of specialists in gynecology and interventional radiology recently launched the new Fibroid Program at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dedicated to diagnosing and treating patients with uterine fibroids, the program offers access to a full range of multidisciplinary options for managing the often painful condition.
Approximately 20 to 50% of women of reproductive age have uterine fibroids, the most frequently seen tumors of the female reproductive system. While typically non-cancerous, they can lead to heavy or prolonged menstrual periods, pain, anemia and infertility.
John Petrozza, MD, and Gloria Salazar, MD, consult with a patient.
"The Mass General Fibroid Program is designed to offer women customized treatment options that reflect individual needs, lifestyles and medical histories," said John Petrozza, MD, Mass General gynecologist and reproductive endocrinologist and co-director of the program with interventional radiologist Gloria Salazar, MD.
"Rather than sending a patient over here for a checkup, and then over there for another opinion, we provide one access point for all her care." he said.
Patients of the program have the option to meet with both a gynecologist and an interventional radiologist during their initial consultation. Treatment options may include minimally invasive laparoscopy, hysteroscopy and ablation; myomectomy and hysterectomy; uterine fibroid embolization (UFE); medical treatments or watchful waiting.
"The Mass General Fibroid Program is truly a collaborative, multidisciplinary effort," said Dr. Salazar. "By bringing together experts throughout the hospital, we give our patients more options for managing their fibroids, which we believe can lead to better outcomes. We are able to minimize the time between diagnosis and treatment because all aspects of care are managed seamlessly under one program, by one nurse coordinator."
The program’s nurse coordinator handles all aspects of a patient’s care including scheduling appointments and connecting patients to additional resources such as translation services and financial coordinators. Doctors in the program work closely with obstetricians, gynecologists and primary care providers to ensure that treatments are well coordinated with a patient’s ongoing care. They are also available for consultation and second opinions.
In addition to providing coordinated care for women, the Mass General Fibroid Program aims to improve the standard of care for the condition. By analyzing patient data over time, Drs. Salazar and Petrozza anticipate gaining additional insight into the benefits of different approaches to managing fibroids for different patients.