Acupuncture Treatment for Uterine Fibroids and Cysts
Uterine fibroids and cysts are benign tumors in the uterus. They are uterine smooth muscle cells that have grown abnormally. Sometimes they grow in the outer layer of uterine wall, extending to outside of uterus, sometimes they grow in the middle layer of the uterine wall, and sometimes they grow in the inner layer of uterus, extending to the uterine cavity.
Exact causes of fibroids are not clear. However, there are a few common factors that play a role:
- Genetic factors contribute to the development of fibroids.
- Family history of fibroids is risk factor.
- Race plays a role as well.
- Women of African origin tend to have higher risk of developing fibroids in earlier age (in their 20’s).
- Other factors include early first menstruation age, consumption of alcohol, uterine infection and high blood pressure.
Symptoms of fibroids may vary depending on the location of the fibroids, but most women have no symptoms. The most common symptom is abnormal vaginal bleeding if the fibroids are under the inner lining of uterus or if fibroids affect the inner lining blood flow. Anaemia could develop with excessive bleeding. Other symptoms include pelvic pain, feeling pressure, increased urination and painful defecation.
Fibroids, Cysts, and Fertility
Fibroids in the inner layer of the uterus could deform the uterine cavity. This disturbs implantation, and as a result, they decrease fertility. Fibroids are also associated with increased risk of miscarriage and recurrent miscarriage during pregnancy. They also increase pregnancy complications, such as first trimester bleeding, breech presentation, placental abruption and problems during labour, increasing the risk of necessitating a cesarean delivery.
In diagnosing uterine fibroids, ultrasound is a valuable tool. Medical treatment is typically hormonal in nature, aiming to reduce estrogens production.
Alternatively, acupuncture is a potential option for treating fibroids. Acupuncture reduces vaginal bleeding and pelvic pain and helps correct hormonal imbalance by stimulating nerve endings at particular acupuncture points, helping fibroids to shrink. The best part is that there are no side effects when acupuncture is used to treat fibroids and cysts.