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    UTERINE FIBROIDS – DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS? Part 3

    by Ngozi Osuagwu, MD | July 23rd, 2017

    UTERINE FIBROIDS – DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS? Part 3

    Is there a natural approach to healing fibroids?

    This is a very difficult question to answer because I am often not clear what is meant. Are you asking whether there are special herbs that can make the fibroids go away? The research is just not available and so I do not have an answer. I am not aware of any special herbs.  Are you asking about doing something that would avoid the medical interventions that were discussed last week? I would say that it depends on your symptoms.

    If you are bleeding heavily to the point that you are feeling drained, having accidents and your blood count is low, you should seek care. If your abdomen is enlarged where people are saying that you look pregnant and you are having a lot of pelvic pressure, lower back pain, urinating frequently, having severe menstrual cramps and pain with intercourse, you should seek care. It is important to seek care so that we can make sure that you do not have another problem other than fibroids causing your symptoms.

    It is so important to talk with your doctor and discuss your concerns and your fears. You are allowed to have them. You should never be forced to make a decision that is not comfortable for you. Make sure that all your questions are answered.

    Based on limited research, we know what increases your risk and decreases your risk of fibroids. Based on that knowledge there are things that we can do whether or not we have symptoms. It may also be helpful in prevention of uterine fibroids.

    1. Diet plays a role. Beef and other red meats and ham increase the risk of fibroids. Fruits, vegetables and low fat dairy products decrease the risk. Cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower in particular have been helpful.
    2. Weight plays a role. Obesity is associated with an increased risk of developing fibroids. Maintaining an appropriate weight is helpful. This would be the time not to gain any extra weight. Start to exercise regularly to the point where you are working out 4 – 5 hours a week.
    3. Maintain an adequate vitamin D level. Low vitamin D levels increases the risk of uterine fibroids. It will be helpful to know your levels.
    4. Do not start birth control pills before age 16.
    5. Reduce stress – try techniques to manage stress. An example would be Mindful Meditation described in a previous blog.

    This ends the three part series on uterine fibroids. There are probably more questions that could have been answered, but I hope that the information provided can at least help you start the conversation with your relatives, friends and health care provider.

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    The book discusses common gynecological and women’s health issues in a series of witty and entertaining letters. These letters, all educational, offer suggestions on what approaches to take in tackling the medical problems that typically bring women to an ob/gynecologist. The letters are spiced with art, a poem and quotes. Although its emphasis is on gynecology and women’s health, it touches on some other medical issues that make women visit their doctors.

    The second half of the book briefly discusses the most common gynecological conditions and also provides an overview of sexually transmitted infections. A list of annotated websites dealing with the different topics in the book is provided for the reader who wants to pursue each subject in depth.




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