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Fibriod Tumors
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GatorGirl34 posted:
I'm 47 and I just found out I have fibroid tumors. I've had heavy bleeding, painful sex, and bladder problems. I would have my period, which was very heavy, then less than two weeks later I would have bleeding again. Then I went for 3 months without a period. I just started my period yesterday and it's back to the same heavy flow. I'm very confused on what to do....just made another appt. with my gyno for next Monday. I'm trying to avoid a hysterectomy but my insurance won't cover ablation...only a hysterectomy. Anyone have any experience with this?
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Anon_6061 responded:
I agree about avoiding hysterectomy. A hysterectomy destroyed my figure and anatomy. I regret it every day.

Be sure you understand what can happen long-term after ablation. Since the hormonal actions of the ovaries tell the uterus to build the lining, it can cause chronic pelvic pain because the lining is scarred. This link http://journals.lww.com/greenjournal/Fulltext/2008/12000/Previous_Tubal_Ligation_Is_a_Risk_Factor_for.6.aspx shows the probability of hysterectomy after ablation (as high as 40% in women under age 40). And this risk continues increasing for 8 years following the procedure. There's also a discussion of women's post ablation experiences (short and long term) here - http://forums.webmd.com/3/gynecology-exchange/forum/12649.

A surgeon who has the right skills should be able to remove small fibroids via hysteroscopy and large ones via myomectomy. These surgeries preserve the uterus and its anatomical, skeletal, and sexual functions. The book "A Gynecologist's Second Opinion" by Dr. William Parker may be helpful.

Also, you may be close to menopause when fibroids usually shrink. There are a number of options to treat the heavy bleeding to at least give you relief in that area. OTC or Rx NSAID's taken at the start of your period and on a regular schedule are usually effective in reducing flow and cramping. There's another non-hormonal Rx med called Lysteda (tranexamic acid or cyklakapron) that can be very effective. Or you could take a contraceptive to help. This link lists the meds for heavy menstrual bleeding - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0015970/table/ch8.t1/?report=objectonly.

At least with meds, you can stop taking them if you don't like the side effects. But with procedures, you're stuck with the good and the bad. Hope this helps!
 
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GatorGirl34 replied to Anon_6061's response:
Thank you for so much information!! I know alot of women who have done the albation and all of them have amazing results. If I can get the heavy bleeding to stop, that would help so much. We travel alot and I don't want to have to deal with something so unpredictable. I know I only have a few years left of menstruation, if that long, and if I can avoid a hysterectomy altogether that would be great. I think the ablation would carry me through the next few years until menstruation ceases. I was put on the pill about a year ago because of an ovarian cyst that wouldn't go away but I didn't stay on them long because of wild mood swings and headaches. For me, it wasn't worth it. But I would like to keep an eye on that tumor. I was told if they get big enough, it can grow on the outside of the uterus and maybe even attach to other organs.
My appointment is Monday and I will discuss further with my doctor exactly what I should be doing and I guess I will have to fight with my insurance to get anything done. I was hoping after three months of no period, it wouldn't be as heavy as it was before once it started again but I was wrong and I don't want to do this for the next 5 or 6 years. My mom was 52 when she has her last period.
Again, thanks for the help!
 
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Mary Jane Minkin, MD replied to GatorGirl34's response:
Dear GatorGirl34;
Let me throw in one more option to think about. Another possibility would be the insertion of a Mirena IUD. Even in women who have small fibroids pressing on the lining of the uterus, the Mirena has been shown to substantially decrease bleeding. The other question is exactly where are your fibroids, which can be anywhere in the wall of the uterus. If the fibroids are indeed submucosal (pushing into the lining) they may be, as suggested by Anon_6061, treatable with a hysteroscopic resection (which is like a fancy D and C)-which is an outpatient procedure, and may well be covered by your insurance (it should be).
One thing not to worry about: fibroids can grow quite large on the outside of the uterus, and press on other organs; but they do not attach to other organs. And if you can get through to menopause, most fibroids will shrink substantially, so you don't have to worry about them.
Good luck,
Mary Jane
 
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farmerl responded:
I am 44 and was going through most of what you are going through and it is really tough. However, over a year ago my doctor recommended me to a doctor who specializes in a miminal invasive procedure called the uterine artery embolization: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uterine_artery_embolization . According to wikipedia, "where an interventional radiologist uses a catheter to deliver small particles that block the blood supply to the uterine body". Since the procedure, there has not been any pain, heavy bleeding, or bladder problems except the normal mild bloating. I would recommend this to anyone who is going through this hell...it has certainly helped me in a huge way and I did not have to have a hysterectomy.
 
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Preeslau responded:
See if your insurance company covers fibroid embolization. This is where the doctors cuts the arteries to the fibroids and the fibroids shrink and fall off the uterous and your uterous will go down to size.

Dr. McLucas in Beverly Hills is the first doctor to perform this surgery but he is a PPO doctor.

Good luck,

Laurie
 
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Preeslau replied to farmerl's response:
Farmer,

I have a HMO insurance plan and it's hard to find a doctor that performs this surgery.

Dr. McLucas, Beverly Hills, CA is the way to go but he is a PPO doctor, not HMO.

Do you have any recommendations in the LA area?

Thank you,

Laurie
 
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Anon_6061 replied to Preeslau's response:
Laurie - Are your fibroids causing a lot of problems? How big are they? Have you checked into removal via hysteroscopy (if they're small) or myomectomy (if they're large). If bleeding's the problem, I assume you've already tried the hormonal and non-hormonal options to reduce bleeding.
 
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ladygnome responded:
investigate all the procedures/meds the insurance company will cover, there might be other options that are worth researching. Is it possible to get written clarification of why, outside of $ reasons why they recommended the hysterectomy option? Not sure of how the US system works, but is there a possibility of them part funding a treatment that you prefer.
A hysterectomy is not simple but as some of the posts have pointed out minor procedures don't always work, clinically it might be better to get the problem sorted with one op, and one period of recovery
Good luck we all know how Frustrating it is having our health and wellbeing controlled by administrators. A
 
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whitecollar responded:
I was having similar issues and my gynecologist suggested a procedure called NovaSure. You need to have a clear pap and a clear biopsy and be sure you don't want any more kids. Once those test are confirmed the procedure is performed as an out patient. It was one of the best things I have ever done for myself. Results very but for me, now I only spot for a couple of days once a month. This does not change hormone issues. Best wishes from Northern Virginia


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