Women's Health

Fibroids: What are they and how they come to be?

Few weeks ago during a dinner with my girlfriends my friend said that she has an ultrasound appointment where she might be put under the anaesthesia. Ultrasound does not seem like an invasive procedure so I was curious about the reason. At that point my friend said that she had extensive bleeding for three weeks due to sizeable fibroid which she did not know she had to start with. I always loved children and I look forward to the day I have a complete family of my own so anything that would hinder that possibility I take time to know about in order to be aware and have a chance to prevent. So what are the fibroids and how do they come to be?

Fibroids are non-cancerous tumors that grow from the muscle layers of the uterus (womb) affecting women’s fertility and overall wellbeing.  It is estimated that 1 in 5 (while some say 1 in 3) women will deal with fibroids in their lifetime. The discrepancy in count is largely due to the fact that fibroids often go undiagnosed so a lot of women experience the symptoms without having the full knowledge of the reason behind their dis-ease. The symptoms might be various and range in degree; however, for those looking deeper into the physical health aspect of fibroids, I would suggest to also pay some attention to the potentially underlying and accompanying issues such as parasites, candida, leaky gut, adrenal fatigue and insulin resistance.

Hormones:

Some say that endocrine system is the true ruler of the human health because hormones are largely the ones controlling our mental and physical well-being. Fibroids, in that sense, are a sign of estrogen – progesterone imbalance, lower progesterone in particular, which is why the doctor will often times suggest hormonal treatment. I am skeptical about many medicinal treatments and blessed with the job that allows time for duly research so here are a few things to know:

H

Progesterone is produced both in ovaries and adrenal glands of a woman. Bulk of progesterone used by the brain to regulate woman’s health is produced in the ovaries. Progesterone produced by adrenal glands is later turned into cartisol i.e. “stress hormone” in order to fullfill basic human reaction for fight or flight. Due to gynecological problems such as irregular ovulation or inadequate progesterone production during the ludial phase, woman’s brain experiences shortage of ovarian produced progesterone. After months of progesterone deficiency, the brain will start to draw progesterone from adrenal glands which will in turn interrupt its processes as well.

Low progesterone produced by ovaries:
 

 

Irregular ovulation

 

You could explore your ovulation patterns by using the ovulation test strips or basal temperature charting

 

I would say basal body temperature would be the best DIY method to understand current patterns of your menstrual cycle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inadequate progesterone production during the ludial phase of menstrual cycle

 

Symptoms:

– Ludial phase is less than 12 days

– Low basal body temperature

– Spotting in the days before your menses begin

– Sugar cravings ( Progesterone helps to normalize blood sugar level, boosts thyroid function and helps to use fat for energy)

– Blood clots during menses

 

 

Low progesterone produced by adrenal glands:
 

Progesterone, like all other steroid hormones, is synthesized from pregnenolone which in turn is derived from cholesterol:

 

 

Having that in mind, it is essential that we consume adequate amount of high quality dietary cholesterol!!!!

 

 

When women experience frequent and continuous physical, emotional or mental stress, the precursor to progesterone is used to make cortisol instead of   progesterone.

 

 

 

In order to access your cortisol levels, you could do adrenal saliva test.

 

While doing the research I stumbled upon a book that was endorsed by many bloggers writing about women’s health which is ” Take charge of your fertility” by Toni Weschler. I ordered it too based on high praises and it does look as a great resource if you are looking to read more.


Psychosomatics: 

Before we dive into the psychosomatic of fibroids, let us remember the original design of the universe for the continuation of human life on Earth. Put philosophical and ideological principles aside, we would agree that once humans could assert their own survival, their next most basic instinct and priority was to procreate and ensure further survival of their blood line. In that context, men were designed to inseminate women and protect survival of their clan. Women, in turn, were designed to birth and nurture the children. In a lot of ways, when we refer to “manhood”, in the deepest layer of it are males’ sex hormones and their reproductive organs (In fact penis is celebrated in number of Asian countries for its fertility properties). Respective to women, understanding of “womanhood” is drawn on the same basis: female sex hormones and reproductive organs (the leading role given to the womb). With that in mind, what should we make of fibroids residing in the very cradle of women’s design, in the very core of her womanhood?

 

Throughout the time, motherhood has been and still is highly regarded role of a woman. In fact it is the approach to motherhood that seems to be central to understanding psychosomatic reasons of fibroids. Not to oversimplify the issue, I LL describe two extremes with a few interesting points to emphasize the range of possible reasons in between.

It is nature and nurture that forms woman’s understanding of the world and her place in it. If we take things at the most literal meaning, we can find women who see motherhood as their only way to self-actualize, as the sole reason justifying their being. Now, imagine such hyperextended focus on motherhood in the context of life of a woman:

– who is not yet in a situation permitting her to have kids for whatever reason

– whose children are maturing / have already matured into fully independent adults

In those cases women could find themselves “conceiving” that “something” in their womb trying to fill the void.

It would be true to say that if this framework is ringing a bell for you, you should consider expanding your own perception regarding the role of women in the society. You should “birth” new ideas and nurture relationships with others to have the energy moving.

That being said, you should also be aware that fibroids often happen with domineering, authoritative mothers who strive to always control everything. They cannot accept imperfections of their children and so find a place to harbor their resentment. If such women have daughters, those daughters have a very high chance of fibroids themselves but more so out of fear to repeat their mother’s character / destiny or out of fear of being a bad mother.

 

In contrast with women with hyperextended focus on motherhood, there are women who neglect their motherhood potential. In the context of modern day, motherhood is seen as a choice made by a woman for personal rather than societal benefit. In that sense, the society is very generous in publicly recognizing and praising women who achieved equal or superior to men standing in terms of financial independence, productivity, skills or any other aspect relative to patriarchal supremacy. There are number of reasons why a woman might opt out of motherhood but by doing so she rejects her child rearing role and might eventually beat herself up for not full filling her motherhood duty. In some cases women are deeply rooted in their choice of not becoming a mother. In other cases, women face the inner conflict or eventual understanding that they put the ladder against the wrong wall. Either way, consciously or subconsciously, women feel uneasy and inadequate in their role as a woman and antagonize themselves. The body reflects woman’s thinking by obstructing her fertility and in a way inhibiting her from realizing her nature fully.

 

Psychosomatics is something that I discovered fairly recently. I certainly understand the limitation of presenting the extreme ends of the spectrum and leaving a huge space for the reader to deduce the possible reasons in between; however, I think psychosomatics is amazing for bringing awareness of psychological factors present in our communication with our bodies. It certainly gives direction and food for thought. When treating fibroids, I see how working with the psychologist could be of help. I am not really competent in such area so I LL just mention two books that seem to be most fitting the topic: “Heroin’s Journey” by Maureen Murdock and “Radical Forgiveness” by Colin Tipping.

Thanks for reading,

 

 

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