Health care providers state that fibroids are the most common tumors in the reproductive system of women. They grow in the womb and they are benign in nature. They are generally made up of muscle fibre and they can either be small, medium or large size. Reports state that about 20-50 percent of women will have these fibroids at least once in their lifetime. However, they are rare in women of less than 20 years of age and are common among women between the age group of 30 and 40.
The best thing to understand here is that they shrink on their own, once a lady reaches the age of menopause. Treatment for this condition becomes important, particularly when the woman is in childbearing age as it can affect her fertility. Even though, removal of uterus is the procedure recommended for this condition, it is not the ideal choice for women, who want to conceive. Also, removal of uterus, which is done through a procedure called as hysterectomy is something that stops the menstrual cycle completely. This can lead to many health complications in women like vaginal dryness, infections, etc. The best alternative available is fibroid embolisation. Here are some details about this procedure:
What is this procedure?
It is a minimally invasive procedure done under sedation and not anesthesia. A tiny nick is made in the skin and the patient will not experience any pain during the procedure as she will be under sedation, but will be conscious. This procedure is done by an interventional radiologist, who has received special training for performing it. After a small nick is made in the groin, a catheter will be inserted into the artery under the guidance of an X-ray. The catheter is sent to the uterus and tiny plastic particles in the size of grains of sand will be sent by the radiologist to the artery that supplies blood to the fibroid. This will stop the flow of blood and this in turn will make the fibroid to shrink. Then, the artery in the other side of the uterus will be treated.
Is this procedure new?
This procedure is being done by interventional radiologists for more than 20 years now for treating of heavy bleeding after childbirth. This procedure will help women to get to their normal works within a week. Not only for single fibroid, this procedure can also help in treatment of multiple fibroids as well.
Symptoms of uterine fibroids:
Any women with the following symptoms can get the help of a gynecologist to find whether there are uterine fibroids in her uterus:
• Abnormally enlarged abdomen
• Pressure on bowel that leads to constipation and bloating
• Pressure in the bladder that creates constant urge to urinate
• Heaviness or pressure in the lower abdomen
• Leg pain, back pain or pain the lower abdomen
• Prolonged menstrual periods
• Unusual bleeding during periods with clots
In short, this is an outpatient procedure that provides easy relief to uterine fibroids as against surgical procedures.