In order to stay healthy all life long, you must be aware of diseases that are common. However, many don’t know much about health issues such as uterine fibroids. These are non-cancerous tumours that develop on or within the muscular wall of the uterus.
To understand it in a better way, HerZindagi exclusively spoke to Dr Santosh B Patil, who is a consultant Neuro and Vascular Interventional Radiologist at The Vein Center. He explained uterine fibroids “are comprised of dense, fibrous tissues which are fed by blood vessels. Fibroids are frequent occurrences and are the most common benign tumours in women.”
What Is Uterine Fibroids?
Typically, women who have uterine fibroids have more than one fibroid and they can vary in size. Some are no bigger than a pea while others can grow to the size of a melon. “It is estimated that fibroids become clinically relevant in about 25 % to 35 % of all women aged between 30 and 50 years,” told Dr Santosh B Patil to Hz.
What Are The Symptoms Of Uterine Fibroids?
A woman may experience symptoms like heavy menstrual bleeding, exhaustion, frequent urination, constipation, backache, pelvic pressure, and difficulty in passing urine when the tumours become big in size.
“These symptoms can make one feel low, less attractive, and irritable that further may reduce sexual desire and impact personal life. According to research published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and the Journal of Women’s Health, uterine fibroids cause significant fear and morbidity and can compromise workplace performance,” said Dr Patil.
Treatment Of Uterine Fibroids
Traditionally, uterine fibroids treatment ranges from monitoring the fibroids or administering medications to relieve the symptoms, to more invasive surgical approaches.
This may include, “myomectomy and hysterectomy. Hysterectomy is a surgery performed to remove a woman’s uterus and cervix. In all cases, menstruation stops and a woman loses the ability to bear children,” said Dr Patil.
“Myomectomy removes uterine fibroids, without removing the uterus. However, it is not suitable for all types or locations of fibroids and does not remove the possibility of fibroid recurrence. The drawbacks have made it less popular than hysterectomy in the management of fibroids,” he added.
Uterine Fibroid Embolisation
Uterine fibroid embolisation is a novel minimally invasive non-surgical procedure that alleviates various fibroid symptoms and decreases fibroid size safely and effectively by blocking blood flow (yoga for blood circulation) to the fibroids, causing them to shrink significantly.
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“A UFE procedure is performed by a specially trained vascular interventional radiologist doctor. It involves making a small pinhole (less than 1 mm size) opening in the groin or wrist area through which a catheter is inserted and threaded into the blood vessels surrounding the fibroids,” explained Dr Santosh B Patil.
“Tiny particles are then inserted that block blood supply to the fibroid. UFE is approved by leading health regulatory authorities all over the world as a safe and effective non-surgical treatment for fibroids, with 90 per cent of women reporting fast relief from painful symptoms,” he added.
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