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 Homeopathy: Healing Uterine Fibroids 

If you happen to know anything about uterine fibroids, commonly called just "fibroids", it's probably because you have them yourself. Perhaps your mother had a hysterectomy because of fibroids and you assume the same will happen to you. We see many women who have fibroids and want to share with you the many options available.

Fibroids are benign uterine tumors, usually multiple, but sometimes single, found in about 20% of all women over 35. They rarely grow after menopause. Only 0.5% of all fibroids develop into cancer. Fibroids may be so small that you never even know you have them or so large that it appears you are in the early stage of pregnancy. Fibroids are discovered either during a routine pelvic exam or when symptoms develop, such as abnormal vaginal bleeding, discomfort, heaviness, or increased urinary frequency due to the fibroid(s) pressing on the bladder. Diagnosis of fibroids is confirmed by pelvic ultrasound.

What do I do if I found out I have a fibroid? Women have usu- ally been told that surgery is the only solution, often fear a hysterectomy, and come to us seeking an alternative. If you do have fibroids, it is quite helpful to have an ultrasound, if you haven't already. This provides a base- line of the size which you can compare later after treatment. What you do next depends on the size of the fibroid(s) and whether or not you or not it is causing any symptoms. If the fibroids remain small, you may never have to worry about them. If the fibroids are not very large, but are causing bleeding or other symptoms, natural therapies may be enough. If your fibroids are very large, and particularly if they are calcified, surgery may be necessary. Keeping your fibroids at their current size (unless they are large) until menopause may be enough to prevent surgery.

What natural therapies are available to treat fibroids? Various natural therapies can be used to ideally shrink the fibroids, or at least to keep them from growing. We always use homeopathy as a main-stay in treating fibroids. One remedy, for example, is helpful for women with fibroids who are irritable, have heavy, clotted periods, cry easily, and have very low sex drive. A different remedy is needed if the woman is bleeding heavily, with bright red blood but no clots, quite thirsty, and is a very gregarious and sympathetic person. There are over fifty homeopathic remedies which may fit the individual woman. Ayurvedic body typing can also be helpful for fibroids. If the woman is bleeding heavily, she has a fire (Pitta) imbalance and had best avoid hot spicy, acidic, and sour food and hot tubs. If she is overweight, has a sluggish metabolism, and prob- lems with mucus congestion, her fibroid will respond better to a diet free of or low in dairy, red meat, salt, and heavy foods. Many cases of uterine of fibroids are due to an excess of estrogen in the body. Therefore, we often advise decreasing red meat, chicken, and other dietary sources of estrogen. It is the job of the liver to break down (conjugate) estrogen. If the liver is sluggish or overworked (which can happen whenever the body needs to detoxify substances such as fats, caffeine, alcohol, drugs, or chemicals of any kind), excess estrogen can build up. A combination of herbs and amino acids can help the liver detoxify more efficiently. A multiple vitamin and mineral is always important, and if the woman is bleeding a lot, it's essential to make sure she's not anemic and have her take iron if necessary. Castor oil packs to the abdomen, following the directions of Edgar Cayce, may help fibroids as can a variety ofWestern, Chinese, and Ayurvedic herbs. We always recommend daily visualization to send healing light and love to the uterus.

What about the psychological factors relating to fibroids? This could be an article it itself! We almost always do hypnosis with any women with fibroids to discover the underlying cause. Frustrated or unwanted pregnancies, sexual abuse or lack of sexual satisfaction, self reproach or blame, or the inner self asking for nurturance are common themes, though what comes up for each woman is unique. Be sure, regard- less of what therapy you use, to try to discover the source of why your body manifested the fibroids in the first place.

What about surgery? If surgery is necessary, find a gynecologist whom you really trust. Talk carefully with the surgeon prior to scheduling surgery to make sure that he or she will remove only what is absolutely necessary and that the uterus and ovaries will all be saved if at all pos- sible. Many women don't understand how important it is to try to retain their ovaries so that hormone therapy will not be required prematurely. None of our patients, so far, have had hysterectomies due to fibroids. If you do need surgery, try not to worry. It is routine and safe. We prescribe a homeopathic remedy for before and after surgery, vitamins and minerals such as beta carotene, C, zinc, and E to promote rapid recovery and wound healing, and bromelain to prevent scar tissue formation after surgery. We also do a pre-surgery hypnosis session to program a very positive outcome. We often hear reports that the surgeon was amazed at how quickly the woman healed.

Most of all,stay calm, take this opporunity to love and nurture yourself, make the choices which you, not others, feel are best for you, surround yourself with healing, and learn the most you can from your experience.

Drs. Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman and Robert Ullman are naturopathic and homeopathic physicians and cofounders of the Northwest Center for Homeopathic Medicine in Edmonds, WA. They are coauthors of The Patient's Guide to Homeopathic Medicine and Beyond Ritalin: Homeopathic Treatment of ADD and Other Behavioral and Learning Problems. They can be reached at (206) 774-5599.

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 About The Author
Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman ND, MSWJudyth Reichenberg-Ullman, ND, DHANP, MSW is a licensed naturopathic physician board certified in homeopathic medicine. She graduated with a degree in ...more
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