Thu, May 10, 2018 - Page 4 News List

Uterine fibroids linked to menstrual issues: doctor

By Su Meng-chuan and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

A woman’s prolonged menstrual periods were caused by a uterine fibroid that had slipped into her cervix, an obstetrician and gynecologist said.

The 45-year-old had already given birth to three children, but in the past two to three years, her menstrual period became irregular, said Hsieh Chang-hsing (謝昌興), an obstetrician and gynecologist at Cheng Ching Hospital’s Chung Kang branch in Taichung.

Each month, her menstrual period would last from 10 to 20 days, during which she would experience dizziness and discomfort, Hsieh said, adding that the condition began to seriously affect the woman’s quality of life.

After seeking medical attention at a hospital, she was diagnosed with a uterine fibroid and a doctor recommended removing the entire uterus, Hsieh said.

Since the patient wanted to preserve her uterus, she went to Cheng Ching Hospital for a second opinion, he said.

A blood test showed that the woman’s hemoglobin count was lower than average and she exhibited symptoms of anemia related to irregular menstrual bleeding, he added.

An ultrasound showed that the uterine fibroid, which should have grown inside the uterus, had gradually slipped into the cervix due to uterine contractions, Hsieh said.

The uterine fibroid was able to slip into the cervix because it had not connected with uterine tissue, he said, adding that since the cervix was blocked, it led to irregular menstrual bleeding and prolonged menstrual periods.

With the help of a hysteroscope, surgeons made an incision and remove the fibroid, Hsieh said.

A laboratory test showed that the fibroid was benign and, more importantly, the woman kept her uterus as she wished, he said.

The cause of uterine fibroids is still largely unknown, Hsieh said.

One in four women could develop the fibroids and about half to 70 percent of people with uterine fibroids are unaware of their condition, he said.

Most people do not seek medical attention until symptoms, such as irregular bleeding, menstrual pain, abdominal pressure, bladder problems and anemia appear, he added, recommending women to receive a pelvic ultrasound exam every year.

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