I'd be happy to tell you about my UFE experience, which was the first surgical-type procedure I had ever had in my life up to that point (I've since had my gallbladder removed).
I had to spend one night in the hospital, so after all the check-in stuff I went to the IR department, where they prepped me for the procedure. The worst part was the urine catheter; a very uncomfortable feeling having that inserted, but it was over quickly. I was not completely anesthetized, so I was vaguely aware during the procedure and even answered questions. Trust me, I didn't feel a thing. At one point I asked them if they had started yet; they all laughed, because they had just finished!
Once in my room, I felt nauseous from pain meds and had bad cramps, and the urine catheter and IV were constant sources of irritation. It was hard to get comfortable. The cramps were similar to my worst period cramps, and the catheter made me feel like I had a sunburn 'down there"
At this point, let me tell you that I have a high tolerance for pain. They had hooked me up to a gadget that I could use to give myself a dose of pain meds, but I never used it (narcotics make me sick) . I had felt ill after the procedure from what ever they gave me during, and I did not want more. They insisted I use an anti-infammatory, so I just took ibuprofen. It didn't take the pain away, just took the edge off, and I was OK with that. I dozed and watched TV, and spent a long and fitful night.
I was never so happy as when they took the catheter and IV out the next morning! Can you tell I'm a cranky patient? I felt so much better after breakfast and getting dressed, and using the restroom on my own. They released me about 11:00. I felt wobbly but happy walking to the car.
Once home, I continued to feel a little wobbly and "worked over" the first day. Still had bad cramps, but they lessened rapidly. The little puncture site where they went in my groin was mildly uncomfortable, and certain areas were still feeling offended by the catheter. I had brown discharge and needed to wear a pad.
I improved rapidly. Within 3 days I felt I could do my normal routine around the house: cooking, light laundry and cleaning. I even went for some walks on my street. I do emphasize that I did all of this gently, and made sure I had plenty of rest. I had taken two weeks off from work, but I think I could have gone back after one week if I kind of took it easy. So, I treated myself kindly those first two weeks after the procedure. At the 3 week point, it was back to life as usual: work, exercise, etc. It was like nothing had happened.
I had brown discharge for 3-4 months, and needed a pad every day. Eventually it lessened, then disappeared. My regular periods resumed, and right away they were lighter. Still had some wicked period cramps , which disappointed me, but as time went by they lessened as well. My periods are now light and painless; I no longer have to plan my life around my monthly cycle!
For a little perspective, last year I had my gallbladder removed (laparoscopic). To me, the UFE was easier all the way around (pain, recovery,etc.).
I hope this helps. If you have any more questions, just let me know.