Uterine fibroids are lumps that grow on your uterus. You can have fibroids on the inside, on the outside, or in the wall of the uterus.
Your doctor may call them fibroid tumors, leiomyomas, or myomas. But fibroids are not cancer. You do not need to do anything about them unless they are causing problems.
Fibroids are very common in women in their 30s and 40s. But fibroids usually do not cause problems. Many women never even know they have them.
What causes uterine fibroids?
Doctors are not sure what causes fibroids. But the female hormones estrogen and progesterone seem to make them grow. Your body makes the highest levels of these hormones during the years when you have periods.
Your body makes less of these hormones after you stop having periods (menopause). Fibroidsusually shrink after menopause and stop causing symptoms.
What are the symptoms?
Often fibroids do not cause symptoms. Or the symptoms may be mild, like periods that are a little heavier than normal. If the fibroids bleed or press on your organs, the symptoms may make it hard for you to enjoy life. Fibroids make some women have:
Long, gushing periods and cramping.
- Fullness or pressure in their belly.
- Low back pain.
- Pain During Sex.
- An urge to urinate often.
Heavy bleeding during your periods can lead to anemia. Anemia can make you feel weak and tired. Sometimes fibroids can make it harder to get pregnant. Or they may cause problems during pregnancy, such as going into early labor or losing the baby (miscarriage)
How are uterine fibroids diagnosed?
To find out if you have fibroids, your doctor will ask you about your symptoms. He or she will do a pelvic exam to check the size of your uterus.
Your doctor may send you to have an ultrasound or another type of test that shows pictures of your uterus. These help your doctor see how large your fibroids are and where they are growing.
Your doctor may also do blood tests to look for anemia or other problems.
TREATMENT OF FIBROIDS
- Small, asymptomatic Fibroids do not need treatment, a regular follow up with ultrasound is all that is needed in these patients.
- Treatments like Laparoscopy Myomectomy/hysteroscopy, Myomectomy, Gross wedgings of the uterus or laparoscopic Hysterectomy can all be offered to the patients and the correct treatment chosen according the reproductive needs of the patients. All the treatment “individually” or tailor made as each patient has her own individual needs.
- In women where fibroids lead to any of the above mentioned symptoms in the patient the fibroids must be removed. This is best done by the “LAPAROSCOPIC METHOD”.
- If the women is above 40 Years of age and her family is complete, She can opt for removing the whole uterus and not just the fibroid by a “LAPAROSCOPIC HYSTERECTOMY”
- If the patient is under 40 Years of age or is desirous of having a baby then a “LAPAROSCOPIC HYSTEROSCOPIC / MYOMECTOMY” would be performed for her.
- Both Laparoscopic Hysterectomy/Laparoscopic Myomectomy are performed at Sunrise Hospital as “SHORT STAY” procedures. Also at SUNRISE the patient is offered LUAL (Laparoscopic uterine artery ligation) along with her Laparoscopic Myomectomy to decrease the recurrence of Fibroids.
Comparison of Laparoscopic Surgery with Open Surgery:
|S. NUM||LAP SURGERY||OPEN SURGERY|
|1||Only 1 Day Hospital Stay||Hospital Stay for 5-6 Days|
|2||Minimal blood loss (less than 100ml)||Patient loses at least 500ml of blood|
|3||No need for Blood Transfusion||Blood Transfusion often needed|
|4||No need for I.V Drip||I.V Drip needed for 24 Hours|
|5||Minimal pain (Most patients do not
need even oral pain killers)
|More Painful (Pain Score charts higher)|
|6||Early return to work (2-3 Days)||Usually return to work only after 1 month|
|7||Less Costly||More Expensive|
At Sunrise with our expert teams, women with any size of the uterus (Even very large upto 36 weeks size) and women with any number of previous surgeries (Like even previous 5 caesarean sections) are easily operated upon only by the Laparoscopic route.
|Patient before Lap Myomectomy||Myoma(fibroid removed)||Patient 1.5 year after fibroid surgery|