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Uterine Fibroids

Question

I would like to know what are the recommendations for women who have fibroids of the uterus. Should I have them removed, and if so how? Do I need a hysterectomy?

Answer

Thank you for your question. I get asked it a lot.

Fibroids are benign growths (almost never cancerous) of the muscle of the wall of the uterus. They grow when estrogen levels are high and progesterone levels aren’t high enough. A large number of midlife women have them, they tend to increase in size before menopause and then after menopause they shrink.

It is very rare that fibroids become so big that they push on the bladder or the bowel, cause pain or change the shape of the abdomen. There are the only accepted reasons for surgery for fibroids. Now—the confusing thing is that the same high estrogen low progesterone hormonal changes also cause increased menstrual flow. When that happens often a woman is sent for an ultrasound. Low and behold, there are fibroids. There is a tendency for doctors and women to blame heavy flow on fibroids. That is rarely ever true because only those that are pushing out the lining could cause flow problems.

So, in short, if the above problems don’t apply to you, don’t worry about the fibroids and don’t DO anything. Except exercise. keep your weight normal and don’t have more than one alcohol drink a day because these will help your estrogen levels to be lower.

Hope this is helpful.

 

Updated Date: 
Wednesday, November 20, 2013 - 15:30

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