Shouldn’t women be thankful that a new development in modern medicine can actually shrink their disease myoma or fibroids?
About three out of four women of reproductive age will develop fibroids, which are non-cancerous tumors. They are among the most common reasons for hysterectomies, or surgical removal of the uterus.
Fibroids are bundles of muscle fiber and connective tissue that typically grow inside the uterus or uterine wall. Tiny ones generally cause no symptoms, but fibroids can become cantaloupe-sized and may cause severe abdominal and back pain, heavy menstrual bleeding, frequent urination and infertility. The female hormone estrogen promotes their growth; fibroids tend to shrink and disappear after menopause.
A uterine myoma (myoma uteri) is a solid tumor made of fibrous tissue, hence it is often called a ‘fibroid’ tumor. Myomas vary in size and number, are most often slow-growing and usually cause no symptoms. Myomas that do not produce symptoms do not need to be treated. Approximately 25% of myomas will cause symptoms and need medical treatment.
Myomas may grow as a single nodule or in clusters and may range in size from 1 mm to more than 20 cm in diameter. Myomas are the most frequently diagnosed tumor of the female pelvis and the most common reason for a woman to have a hysterectomy. Although they are often referred to as tumors, they are not cancerous.
Most uterine fibroids are harmless, do not cause symptoms, and shrink with menopause. But some fibroids are painful, press on other internal organs, bleed and cause anemia, or cause pregnancy problems. If you have afibroid problem, there are several treatments to consider.
MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS OF MYOMA
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Menstrual period lasting seven days or longer
- Bloating or fullness in the stomach/pelvic region
- Pelvic pressure or pain
- Frequent urination
- Difficulty emptying your bladder
- Pain with intercourse
- Backache or leg pains
- Reproductive issues, including infertility and miscarriages
LASER TO GET RID OF UTERINE FIBROIDS
Getting rid of uterine fibroids just got easier. With only a local anesthetic, a laser can zap them away — and you go home the same day.
A group of British researchers has developed this novel method for treating fibroids. Many women develop the benign, fibrous uterine tumors, which can cause severe bleeding, pain, infertility, and miscarriage.
Doctors use a number of techniques to remove fibroids, but all typically involve general anesthesia and a hospital stay. In this new procedure, a laser is guided by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), under a local anesthetic.
In the procedure, four fine needles are inserted through the skin. These are placed into the fibroid — guided by MRI, which produces a thermal image of the fibroid updated every 3 seconds.
Laser fibers are then inserted into the needles and used to zap the fibroid with thermal energy. The MRI image turns from blue to green as the temperature reaches the optimum level. The “real time” color images allow the doctor to maximize the treatment within the target area — avoiding damage to normal surrounding tissue.
Experimental technology that uses lasers to heat and shrink uterine fibroids is showing promise in helping women avoid hysterectomies or other surgery.
About three out of four women of reproductive age will develop fibroids, which are noncancerous tumors. They are among the most common reasons for hysterectomies. But surgeons sometimes try to remove just the fibroid and leave the uterus intact.
Laser ablation is among the latest treatments that preserve the uterus, and the procedure is also being tried in treating other tumors, including cancers of the liver, kidney and lung.
The technique successfully shrank fibroids in 35 of the women. At a six-month follow-up, fibroids had shrunk an average of 37 percent. All the women reported improvement in symptoms, including less abdominal pain and lighter menstrual period.
Because the treatment targets only the fibroid, doctors said it did not appear to affect fertility. But research is continuing to determine if patients can go on to have children.
The female hormone estrogen promotes their growth; fibroids tend to shrink and disappear after menopause.
The technique involves inserting four thin needles into the abdomen and guiding them to the fibroid with magnetic resonance imaging, which allows the doctor to pinpoint where to apply the heat.
Laser fibers are then inserted through the needles into the fibroid, where they are heated to over 140 degrees to kill fibroid cells. Shrinkage continues until about six months after treatment.
The procedure, performed under light sedation, takes about two hours, and patients can go home four hours later.
Though even more experimental, the laser treatment is less painful and does not require an overnight stay at the hospital.
Dr. Elizabeth Stewart, clinical director of the Center for Uterine Fibroids at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said the technique sounded promising but needed further study.
They plan to start another phase of the study early next year using ultrasound to see if fibroids can be zapped without breaking the skin.
FOODS TO ELIMINATE TO REDUCE RISK OF MYOMA
- High-Fat, Processed Meats – High-fat, processed meats are some of the worst food choices for women when it comes to fibroids
- Conventional Dairy – Non-organic dairy can be high in steroids, hormones and other chemicals that may alter your hormones levels when eaten in high amounts, which encourages the development and growth of fibroids.
- Refined Sugar – Consuming a lot of refined sugar can promote inflammation and lead to weight gain. It may also increase pain and reduce immune function. There’s an association between weight gain and hormonal imbalance, and these two factors can encourage the development of fibroids. Studies have even shown that a high dietary glycemic index is associated with higher risk of uterine fibroids in some women.
- Refined Carbohydrates – Managing hormones not only involves the elimination of sugars from the diet, but also refined carbohydrates. Refined carbs — like products made with white, bleached flour — cause insulin levels to spike and hormones to become out of whack. Consuming processed grains, like those in instant hot cereals and commercial breads, causes a sharp rise in insulin. These refined carbohydrates have been stripped of everything but starch, so they offer mostly empty calories and very little nutritional value.
- Alcohol – Over-consuming alcohol can definitely contribute to increased inflammation throughout the body. It also reduces immune function; can promote weight gain; and encourages hormonal imbalances. By reducing or eliminating alcohol, you can help to get your hormones back on track and hopefully help shrink existing fibroids.
- Caffeine – Too much caffeine is taxing on your body, especially your liver. When you give your liver more work to do than it can handle, it isn’t going to do as good of a job at keeping your hormones in check. The more you can keep your alcohol and caffeine consumption down, the easier it is for your liver to detoxify your body and keep your hormones in proper, fibroid-discouraging balance.
- Minimize Toxic Foods, High Glycemic Index Foods That Contribute To Hormonal Imbalance.
- Maximize nutritious and hormone balancing foods
- Maintain digestive Alkaline-Acid Balance
- Maximize consumption of raw foods
- Eliminate food allergens
- cow’s milk
- tree nuts (such as cashews or walnuts)
- Don’t smoke
- Eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and low in saturated fat
- Exercise regularly
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Control your blood pressure
- If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation
- Get adequate sleep
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