The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued full guidance to the NHS in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland on microwave endometrial ablation.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued safety notices relating to this procedure (Reference Nos. MDA [1998] SN 9812 and MDA [1999] SN 1999(18) ). For full details click here.

This guidance has been withdrawn as the use of this procedure is now covered in the Clinical Guideline on Heavy menstrual bleeding, ( NICE has no plans to carry out further assessment of this procedure under the Interventional Procedures Programme.

  • Description

    This procedure is used to treat heavy menstrual periods, also known as menorrhagia.

    Menorrhagia is a very common problem. Hysterectomy has been the standard treatment for women with menorrhagia who have not responded to medical treatment. Minimally invasive procedures to destroy the lining of the uterus (endometrium) are alternatives to hysterectomy. They include destroying the endometrium using lasers, radiofrequency waves, electrocautery, microwaves, heated saline, or a heated balloon.

    Microwave endometrial ablation is one of these minimally invasive procedures. It involves inserting a microwave probe into the uterine cavity to heat the endometrium. With the temperature maintained at 75-80ºC, the probe is moved from side to side to destroy the endometrium.

  • OPCS4.6 Code(s)

    Q16.3 Microwave ablation of endometrium NEC


    Q17.6 Endoscopic microwave ablation of endometrium

    Note: The code selection is dependent on whether the procedure is performed endoscopically (Q17.6) or non-endoscopically (Q16.3).

    The NHS Classifications Service of NHS Connecting for Health is the central definitive source for clinical coding guidance and determines the coding standards associated with the classifications (OPCS-4 and ICD-10) to be used across the NHS.   The NHS Classifications Service and NICE work collaboratively to ensure the most appropriate classification codes are provided.

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