- Age. Fibroids are common in women ages 35 years and older but they tend to get smaller after menopause. They are less likely to appear in women ages 20 and younger.
- Ethnicity. Studies show that African-American women are three times more likely to have fibroids than Caucasian women.
- Body weight. If you are overweight, then you are more susceptible to fibroids. For instance, women with higher BMIs have a 2-3 times greater risk for fibroids. In addition, estrogen aids fibroid growth and overweight women have higher estrogen levels.
- Childbearing. Nulliparous women (never have given birth) and women who started puberty younger are at a higher risk of developing fibroids.
- Fertility. Many infertile women have fibroids. Statistics show that 5 to 10 percent of infertile women have fibroids.
When Fibroids Become ProblematicFibroids only become damaging when they block a fallopian tube or when they occupy a large area of the uterus. In the former, it prevents sperm from reaching the egg cell. In the latter, it prevents the embryo from implanting into the uterine wall. Fibroids can also increase the chances of miscarriage. Premature labor is also more likely in women with fibroids that haven't been treated.
Fibroids can also contribute to incorrect positioning of the baby in the womb – that is, your baby may not be positioned to emerge head first. With fibroids, your risk of cesarean delivery is higher. Fibroids are less likely to lead to complications such as placental abruption or postpartum hemorrhage.
Surgical treatments for fibroids in uterus include hysterectomy and myomectomy.
Hysterectomy and MyomectomyDuring a hysterectomy, the surgeon removes the uterus. After the hysterectomy, you can no longer bear children. Plus, risks are linked to this procedure. Around 1 out of every 5 women who undergo this procedure can suffer an infection. Around 1 out of every 15 women can hemorrhage. And about 1 out of 100 women can sustain damages to their pelvic organs with one woman in 200 dying during the procedure.
Myomectomy is a procedure that removes fibroids from the uterine cavity whilst leaving the uterus intact. With myomectomy, you are still able to bear children. However, the surgery doesn't guarantee a successful conception. Statistics show only 5 successful pregnancies in every 10 women who underwent myomectomy. Also, the risks of internal bleeding are much higher.
In addition, you are more susceptible to complications like infections and blood clots. Also, there's a 50 percent chance that fibroids will grow back after the procedure which is why you may want to know how to treat fibroids naturally as an alternative. This is more common when more than three fibroids are removed during the first myomectomy.
Also, it is possible that the surgery may cause adhesions and may negatively impact fertility. Overall, experts say that there is insufficient evidence on the benefits of myomectomy for fertility. If your fibroids are small and are not causing any difficulties, it is best to leave them alone and have regular checkups. There are many ways on how to treat fibroids naturally including herbs and supplements which can help your body shrink fibroids.
How to Treat Fibroids Naturally
- Be careful with what you eat. Maintain a healthy weight because estrogen levels rise with body mass. Remember, estrogen encourages fibroid growth.
- Eat phytoestrogen-rich foods like linseeds, chickpeas, and lentils. Phytoestrogens lower excessive estrogen levels by reducing estrogen binding.
- Eat foods rich in complex carbohydrates and fiber. Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seed, and whole grains are some examples of how to treat fibroids naturally.
- Minimize your intake of processed foods. They contain saturated fat, preservatives, artificial sweeteners, and additives which are detrimental to your health and some can act as xenoestrogens making your condition worse.
- Drink a minimum of eight glasses of purified water a day.
- Eat less red meat and dairy foods as often as possible. According to studies, these foods contain arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid may exacerbate inflammation, increase blood pressure, and lessen blood clotting.
Do you have fibroids? Have you used natural treatments? Let me know your thoughts on how to treat fibroids naturally!
Purohit, P., & Vigneswaran, K. (2016). Fibroids and infertility. Current obstetrics and gynecology reports, 5(2), 81-88. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4859843/
Williams, A. R. (2017). Uterine fibroids–what’s new?. F1000Research, 6. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5721931/
Guo, X. C., & Segars, J. H. (2012). The impact and management of fibroids for fertility: an evidence-based approach. Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinics, 39(4), 521-533. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3608270/
Metwally, M., Cheong, Y. C., & Horne, A. W. (2012). Surgical treatment of fibroids for subfertility. Cochrane database of systematic reviews, (11). Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23152222/