Uterine Fibroids : Diagnosis, Treatment & Diet
Many women have uterine fibroids and you may not know that you have them, because they don’t cause any symptoms. Uterine fibroids are frequently found during a routine pelvic exam. Your doctor may feel irregular shapes of your uterus, which tells us the presence of fibroids. (Also read – Uterine fibroids -types, causes, symptoms).
You may not know that you have uterine fibroids until you consult your doctor. Your doctor will press on your uterus region during pelvic examination, they may feel any abnormal changes in the shape of your uterus and that could be due to the presence of fibroids. If so, then they’ll suggest you to go get some tests to find out.
Diagnosis can be done by using many modern techniques. Mostly an ultrasound is usually a first kind of Imaging test your doctor will suggest in order to confirm. It uses sound waves to get the picture of your uterus to confirm the diagnosis and to map and measure the uterine fibroids and also perform many other tests as explained below:
A doctor will move ultrasound device on your abdomen or places it inside your vagina to get images of your uterus.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) :
If the ultrasound didn’t provide enough information regarding fibroids, then your doctor may suggest you to get an MRI. It can help your doctor to find out even more details regarding the tumors like their size, location and types of tumors. This would help your doctor to suggest the better treatment.
This is also called as saline infusion sonogram because your doctor will fill your uterus with sterile saline to make uterus bigger so that your doctor can observe your uterus lining, any fibroids, and areas of your soft tissue that X-ray images can’t show properly.
Your doctor will suggest this test if infertility is a concern. This test shows if you have any fibroids, and through this test your doctor can see whether the fallopian tubes are open or not.
Your doctor will collect the X-ray images of your uterus and fallopian tubes and then use a special dye in order make these areas easier to look.
In this test, your doctor will insert a small, lighted telescope which is called a hysteroscope through your cervix into your uterus. Your doctor then injects saline into your uterus, so that the uterus cavity may expand and may allow the doctor to examine the walls of uterus and also the openings of the fallopian tubes.
Treatment for uterine fibroids can vary depending upon their size, number and location as well as what symptoms they cause. Treatment options for uterine fibroids include :
- Iron supplements: If you have anemia due to the excess bleeding your doctor may suggest you iron supplement.
- Over The-counter pain (OTC) medications: These medications are mainly used to manage the discomfort and also for the pain caused by the fibroids.
- Gonadotropin-releasing harmone (GnRH):These medications can be taken as nasal spray or also by injection . The gonadotropin-releasing harmone mainly work by shrinking the fibroid before surgery, and making it easier to remove the fibroid. And these medications are temporary and they may grow back if you once stop using these.
- Progesterone releasing intrauterine device (IUD) : These can relive heavy bleeding caused by fibroids. A progesterone releasing intrauterine device may relief from symptoms and does not shrink the fibroids. And this may also prevent pregnancy.
There are several factors which are considered when talking about the type of the surgery for the cure of fibroids. The surgery is not only dependent on the size, location and number of fibroids but also dependent on your wish for future pregnancy planning.
Myomectomy is the surgical removal of fibroids from the uterus. In this process doctor will remove the fibroids without damaging the uterus. This process very useful for women, who want to become pregnant. There are many types of myomectomy which include:
- Hysteroscopy: This process is done by inserting the scope means a thin flexible tube like tool through vagina and cervix into the uterus. And in this process no incisions are made. In this process by using the scope fibroids are cut away and removed.
- Laparoscopy: In this process also a scope is used to remove the fibroid but this involves placing a few small incisions in your abdomen. This procedure can also be accomplished with the assistance of a robot.
If you are not planning for future babies then there are even some other surgical options which your doctor may suggest as follows:
- Hysterectomy: During this surgery your uterus is removed. Hysterectomy is the only way getting completely rid of fibroids, because fibroids can’t come back by once your uterus is removed. This procedure is recommend when you are experiencing heavy bleeding through fibroids or If you have large fibroids.
- Uterine fibroid embolization: This process is generally performed by interventional radiologist. In this process a small cather is placed in the uterine artery and small particals are used to block the flow of blood to the fibroids from uterine artery.
- Small fibroids can often be left alone. Some women never experience any symptoms or have any problem related to fibroids. Your fibroids may monitored closely but there no need taking immediate action.
Foods that have to be included in one’s diet during this condition:
- Cooked raw vegetables
- Raw and dry fruits
- Cruciferous vegetables
- Whole grains
Foods that have to be avoided in one’s diet during this condition:
- Refined carbohydrates such as white bread, white rice, cakes, cookies etc.
- Refined sugar
- Processed meat
- High fat dairy products
- Caffeinated beverages
- High salt diet
Still researches are going on about the cause of fibroids, but a little scientific evidence is available on how to prevent them. Preventing uterine fibroids completely may not be possible, but by making healthy lifestyle changes, such as maintaining normal weight and eating healthy food like fruits and vegetables may decrease your fibroid risk. And also some researches suggest that using hormonal contraceptives may decrease your risk of uterine fibroids.