|Should You be Concerned About Uterine Fibroids?|
|By Jing J.|
Many years ago, during a pelvic ultrasound exam, I discovered that I had a relatively large fibroid in my uterus. The doctor told me that most women have fibroids and that I should have nothing to worry about. He said that my fibroid was not cancerous, and that all I needed to do was to have a regular pelvic exam to monitor its growth.
My fibroid doesn’t really bother me. I have regular periods and my bleeding is normal. I used to have severe period cramps. But since I made changes to create a healthier lifestyle, my cramps have been pretty mild, and usually only happen on the first day of my periods. So I wonder if my fibroid has shrunk or even disappeared.
It turns out that my case is not unique. Fibroids are extremely common. More than 75% of women can be found to have small fibroids using an MRI, a very sensitive imaging technique.
Fortunately for most women like myself, there are no worrisome symptoms.
Some women, on the other hand, are not as lucky. I have a dear friend who had to have a hysterectomy because of prolonged, heavy bleeding as a result of her fibroids.
Sadly, every year some 600,000 American women have a hysterectomy. About 30% of those hysterectomies are performed because of fibroids. And about 30,000 myomectomies are performed each year to remove fibroids.
According to Dr. William Parker M.D., treatments are usually needed for the following reasons:
Since many women are likely to have fibroids during their reproductive years (most fibroids shrink naturally with menopause), I think it’s important that we are well educated on this issue, and the various options available to us.
This is an important and complex subject. I’ll continue to share more along the way. In this post, I’ll offer three general tips:
1. Create a healthier lifestyle
Even though our medical science has not yet been able to pinpoint the exact cause of fibroids, it’s generally believed that they’re a consequence of a chronic inflammation of the immune system. So lifestyle plays an important role in preventing, managing and healing fibroids, among other menstrual disharmonies.
Eating a healthy and balanced diet, exercising regularly, improving the quality of sleep, and managing stress effectively are the keys to many of our health concerns, including fibroids.
Since change can be challenging when you do it on your own, I’d like to invite you to join our “30-day Challenge to a Healthier Lifestyle.” Each month we pick one healthy habit and focus on creating that habit together – FREE for all Cycle Harmony members. READ MORE...
2. Watch for abnormal menstrual bleeding
As mentioned earlier, a major reason for surgery is heavy bleeding leading to chronic, severe anemia with symptoms such as weakness, fatigue, fuzzy thinking, and light-headedness.
If you have been bleeding heavily over a relatively long period of time, it’s easy to grow accustomed to heavy monthly blood loss and forget how a normal flow would feel. I encourage you to track your menstrual bleeding using our FREE PERIOD TRACKER (monitoring the amount and timing of your monthly bleeding along with other symptoms). LEARN MORE...
If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to get a pelvic checkup (with an MRI perhaps) for fibroids or other conditions. Like everything else, it’s always easier to treat a condition if it’s diagnosed at an early stage.
3. Explore treatment options
A hysterectomy is not the only option when it comes to treating fibroids.
If your fibroids are small (<4cm), acupuncture and Chinese herbs are effective in reducing/removing the fibroids, alleviating secondary symptoms and improving the quality of life.
If your fibroids are relatively large and require surgery, there are other less invasion options to consider:
I had the opportunity to meet two compassionate, trusted, and respected doctors and healers this past weekend in a workshop on uterine fibroids. They would be happy to discuss your options with you.
Dr. William H. Parker is a board-certified Fellow in the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Dr. Parker is an internationally recognized expert in fibroid surgery and research. Based in Los Angeles, California, he is considered one of the best fibroid surgeons for abdominal and laparoscopic myomectomy in the United States and abroad. He has been chosen for Best Doctors in America and Top Doctors every year beginning in the late ’90s.
Contact Dr. Parker at FibroidSecondOpinion.com
Kumiko Yamamoto, L.Ac. is a licensed acupuncturist at Tao of Wellness in Santa Monica specializing in women’s health. Besides offering acupuncture, Chinese medical massage, and herbal and nutrition therapies, she also teaches prescriptive mind-body exercises (Qigong) as well as InfiniChi energy healing.
Contact Kumiko Yamamoto at TaoofWellness.com