Let's talk about Uterine Fibroids
Whatever you want to call them they are a pain - literally
Period pain is NOT normal!!!
Fibroids are non-cancerous tumours that can develop in the uterus during the reproductive years. They are also the leading cause of women requiring hysterectomy. For many years they can go undiagnosed because the pain is accepted as normal when it isn’t or they are asymptomatic meaning that there are no symptoms. They are composed of the same smooth muscle fibres at the uterine wall just a lot denser and usually round.
The growth of the tumours is connected to dysregulated female hormones, often called oestrogen dominance. There can be a single growth or there can be groups of them. They also vary in size from the size of a pea to the size of a melon. They tend to develop after the beginning of menstrual age and shrink after menopause therefore making the connection between fibroids and female hormones very strong.
Fibroids disrupt the function of the uterus in many ways.
The most noticeable to begin with is painful, heavy periods.
When it comes time to try and conceive the disruption in function can prevent the embryo from implanting on the uterine wall. It can also lead to recurrent pregnancy loss. Preterm labour.
After a full case history is taken we then begin our investigations and start on a treatment plan. If at any stage I feel that further investigation is needed I will suggest seeing specialised gynaecologists that I refer to, as there are only a few who have extensive specialised experience.
If you are experiencing any of the following signs and symptoms I will be able to help find the underlying cause and begin a treatment plan for improvement.
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Period pain
- Pain in the lower back and upper thighs
- Periods that last more than a week
- Spotting between periods
- Painful intercourse
- Frequent urination
What increases your chances of getting fibroids
- Having a family member with fibroids
- Being overweight
- Having high blood pressure
- Race, some cultural backgrounds are more prone to fibroids than others
Fibroids are classified by their location. It is possible to have more than one type at the same time.
- Intracavitary fibroid – these usually cause bleeding between periods and severe cramping
- Subserosal fibroid – beneath the lining on the outside of the uterus – these can grow very large and are easily removed with surgery
- Submucosal fibroid – beneath the lining on the inside the uterine cavity – can cause heavy menstrual periods as well as bleeding in between periods if long enough can hang through the cervix.
- Both subserosal & submucosal can also be Pedunculated fibroids – these grow on a small stalk inside or outside of the uterus – these can twist and cause pain
- Intramural fibroid – in the middle of the muscular wall of the uterus – this type doesn’t usually cause pain unless they grow very large and it can distort the uterine cavity
- Cervical fibroids – grow in the wall of the cervix which is the narrow neck like part at the entrance of the uterus
Fibroids are one cause of severe period pain but it is important to keep in mind that it could also be endometriosis.
Endometriosis is when the tissue from the inner lining of the uterus grows in other parts of the body.
Seeking treatment early is the best solution especially when it comes to hormone dysregulation. Usually the first response to Oestrogen regulation is the oral contraceptive pill but this isn’t the only answer. It is also important to remember that this isn’t treating the underlying cause. As a Naturopath the underlying cause is always worked on.
Who am I?
I am a Bachelor qualified Naturopath who specialises in improving metabolic processes in the body. Major areas for improvement include gut, thyroid, kidney, skin and liver health. Conditions such as hypothyroidism, fatty liver, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, type II diabetes, & irritable bowel conditions. I help my patients by giving them symptomatic relief while working on repairing the underlying causes of metabolic stress and waste accumulation. Patients experience amazing results which are seen in their blood tests with improved thyroid markers, cholesterol, and liver markers. As well as lower blood pressure and see relief from improved gastrointestinal symptoms like the ones that mean you need to know where every single toilet is before you leave the house.
Melissa Callaghan BHSc, BTeach
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- Tags: Blood pressure, Endometriosis, Fibroids, Hormones, Inflammation, pain, period, Period pain, Reproduction, urinary, weight gain, Women's Health