Women’s health

Uterine fibroids.

Uterine fibroids are benign growths that can form on both the interior and
exterior walls of the uterus. They may cause no symptoms at all or may make
themselves a nuisance by causing heavy and too frequent menstrual periods, pain
on intercourse and fatigue. If left untreated, anaemia will result.

The growth of fibroids is generally accepted to be dependent on the presence
of oestrogen. Therefore they seldom develop prior to the onset of periods and
usually shrink after menopause. Sometimes no treatment is needed if they are not
causing unwanted symptoms, and especially if the patient is close to menopausal
age.

Natural treatments usually revolve around reducing oestrogen excess and
regulating excessive bleeding. Fibroid size will need to be contained or
reduced. Herbal extracts can be effective in doing both, depending on the blend
of herbs used. Relevant herbs may be Paeonia and/or Chaste Tree
plus Bethroot, Lady’s Mantle or Shepherds Purse which have an astringent
effect.
Blue Cohosh can also be very effective, (combined with other
herbs) and so can herbals containing Calendula and Damiana. It would be best to
consult a medical herbalist to find the appropriate blend.

Dietary considerations would be to keep to a high fibre, low fat diet as this
type of diet helps reduce excessive oestrogen levels in the body. It would also
be advisable to supplement with minerals to prevent anaemia and to help the body
heal.

As the liver is the main means for the body to rid itself of excess oestrogen
a herbal liver tonic is often useful. See page on ‘Liver – the facts’.