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The embolic agents, polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) or Embospheres are designed to be permanent. Both PVA and Embospheres have long track records of use and their safe biocompatibility has been well documented. To date, there have been no reports of adverse reactions or long-term effects referable to either of these agents.
The incidence of death following UFE is approximately 1 in 5,000-7,000 cases. One patient died from an infection that proceeded to sepsis and multiorgan system failure. Two other patients died from pulmonary embolism following the procedure. To put UFE into perspective, the 30-day mortality from elective hysterectomy (excluding obstetrical emergencies and cases of malignancy) is approximately 1 in 1,000 cases.