Uterine Fibroids, And Acupuncture
Uterine Fibroids, also referred to as fibromyomas, leiomyomas or myomas, are typically benign or non-cancerous tumors in the uterus. These growths generally develop during a womans childbearing years, and so may affect women in their 30s and 40s. Some Uterine Fibroids develop below the smooth muscle lining (myometrium) of the uterus, while some grow between the muscles of the uterus. Typically, one single cell continually reproduces, developing in an abnormal mass. The fibroids are characterized by pale growth, which is firm and rubbery. The growths, or tumors, may vary in size, and either grow as a single nodule, or in clusters.
Uterine Fibroids are among the most common tumors among women, and affect up 25-50% of women (according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists). 70% of women are diagnosed with having at least one uterine fibroid in their lifetime.
Generally, women do not experience symptoms. However, if symptoms do occur, the most common ones include: heavy menstrual bleeding, spotting between periods, pelvic pain, and urinary incontinence. Some women also experience pain during intercourse, and pain in the lower back. Women with Uterine Fibroids may suffer from complications during pregnancy, miscarriage or infertility. In some instances, a woman with Uterine Fibroids may suffer very uncomfortable pain, which comes from a decaying fibroid leaking into into nearby tissue. Cases of tumors turning cancerous are rare, although not unknown.
Uterine Fibroids are detected through pelvic examination or imaging tests. The cause(s) of Uterine Fibroids tumors are unknown. Some scientists believe they may be the result of hormonal or genetic. Studies suggest that women who have previously given birth to one child are less prone to develop uterine fibroid tumors, while overweight women and young black women are more prone.
Apparently there is a link between developing fibroids and gastrointestinal health, and women with fibroids are encouraged to monitor and restrict their consumption of caffeine, meat and dairy, alcohol, sugar and trans fats. There is also a believed link between vitamin D deficiency and fibroid formation.
Some medical experts believe that fibroids only require treatment when symptoms exist, such as bleeding, pain or miscarriage. If you wish to have you fibroids removed and do want get pregnant, you want to explore all treatments available for fibroids. One option is to shrink the fibroids, which in some cases, specialists believe can be done naturally by changing ones diet, exercise routines and by following hormone therapy. Another option is uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), which is a relatively invasive procedure. Alternatively, a woman may have surgery, in the form of a hysterectomy. Every year, approx. 300,000 women have hysterectomies because of their fibroids.
Acupuncture, a Chinese alternative medicine, which involves inserting fine filiform needles into body points to reduce pain, may be considered as for women with fibroids to reduce menstrual pains or back pain. One study in 2002 showed that acupuncture reduced fibroid growth and symptoms (published in The Journal Alternative Therapies). A patient is, of course, advised to speak to their doctor about any alternative treatments they wish to pursue.
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