Uterine fibroids treatment in Ayurveda focuses on to remove the root cause of a woman’s health symptoms as heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain and pain in the lower abdomen.
More than 80% of the time uterine fibroid can be dissolved and shrunk naturally!
That’s why you should always first consider a natural treatment for uterine fibroid before your finally resolve for invasive procedures as surgical intervention or hormonal treatment.
And this post will help you to do just that. We will look into the causes, symptoms and Ayurvedic treatment for uterine fibroid. Let’s begin!
What are Uterine Fibroids?
Uterine Fibroids, also known as uterine leiomyoma, leiomyomata, or simply myoma. They are the most common solid benign tumor in women of reproductive age.
The fibroids constitute of connecting fibrous connective tissue and muscles. They grow as knots inside uterine lining, outside or on the uterine cavity walls.
Usually the uterine fibroids vary in size, ranging from microscopic to as big as a fully mature baby inside the womb.
A woman can have a single uterine fibroid or multiple fibroids. These uterine fibroids can be benign (not harmful) or they may create severe painful symptoms for some.
The Types of Uterine Fibroids
Uterine fibroids are classified based on the position in which they have appeared in or around the uterus. They include:
- Subserosal Fibroid: They are found in the thin layer covering the outer wall of the uterus, called serosa. They appear on as small bumps or large growths on the uterine surface.
- Intramural Fibroid: These are found within the wall of the uterus itself. They may extend to the subserosal layer.
- Submucosal Fibroids: They are located entirely inside the uterine cavity, within the endometrium, the inner lining of the uterus. Submucosal fibroids are the most serious type of tumors that affect fertility too.
- Pedunculated Fibroid: They extend from a short stalk or neck and are either borne within or outside the cavity of the uterus.
- Transmural Fibroids: They cut through the uterine wall, extending from the outer wall of the uterus to the inner cavity.
Causes of Uterine Fibroids
Research is still going on regarding this, and there’s no one cause that has been able to completely explain why fibroids develop.
However, there are the triggers and contributing factors that stimulate the growth and development of fibroids. These factors may also cause situations in which benign fibroids transform into the ones that pose serious health risks.
- Environmental Chemicals: These chemicals disrupt the hormone balance inside your body and stimulate the growth of fibroids.
- Poor diet and lifestyle, which create hormone imbalances such as high Estrogen and Insulin Resistance.
- Excess Stress in the form of physical stress or mental stress
- Uncontrolled growth of cells due to poor immunity and high inflammation in the body
- Nutritional Deficiencies such as Vitamin D deficiency, insufficient dietary intake of proteins and antioxidants.
- Endometriosis: abnormal growth of tissues of the endometrial lining of the uterus.
- Irregular Periods and Ovarian Cysts
- Abnormal Blood Vessels disease: abnormal angiogenesis (process of formation of new blood vessels) encourages distribution of nutrients to places where it isn’t necessarily needed.
- Hormone Based Treatment: for example, women who have started taking contraceptives from as early as 13 – 16 years are at a greater risk of developing fibroids.
- Genetic Factors: Women who have relatives that have had issues with uterine fibroid are more susceptible to develop uterine fibroids themselves.
Symptoms of Uterine Fibroid
Here are the signs and symptoms of fibroids that you should know:
1. Excessive Menstrual Bleeding
Menorrhagia or heavy periods is the most common symptom of Uterine Fibroids. Excessive bleeding often results in low iron symptoms or anemia in the patient such as fatigue, nervousness, breathlessness and anxiety.
- Short Menstrual Cycle (less than 21 days) leading to Early or Frequent periods
- Excessive bleeding that needs more than 7-8 pads in a day and also changing in the night.
- Clotted blood flow during menstruation
- Spotting or Bleeding in between periods
2. Pelvic Pressure and Abdominal Swelling
This occurs similar to what happens in pregnancy. Due to the growth of the fibroid, the uterus increases in size.
If a uterine fibroid is large enough, it could make a woman’s uterus expand as much as it does in pregnancy. For example, a uterine fibroid of about 5-10 years old can be as large as the size of a womb in five months of pregnancy.
Health complications might arise in reproduction like infertility, recurrent miscarriages and pregnancy complications.
However, pregnancy is still very much viable, even with safe delivery without a cesarean section. This depends on the type/location of the uterine fibroid.
4. Excessive Pain
A woman may experience excessive pain in the lower back, legs, during intercourse, urination or bowel movement. Pain due to the presence of uterine fibroid becomes more common as the size and number of uterine fibroids increases.
Besides, if the uterine fibroids are directly interfering with the normal functioning of the nerves in any of the region, then it may lead to more pain.
Additionally, uterine fibroid may create inflammation on the uterine wall. This further creates unease, pelvic pain and nausea.
5. Constipation, Bloating and Heaviness
Large fibroids on the external walls (subserous) of the uterus exert pressure on the rectum. This hampers the body’s normal bowel functions and can cause constipation. You may also experience rectal pain.
Altered bowel movement leads to feeling of heaviness, bloating and poor digestion symptoms.
6. Painful Urination and Urinary Incontinence
Presence of a large uterine fibroid or multiple fibroids puts excessive pressure on the bladder, which is located in close proximity to the uterus. This causes frequent and often painful urination.
Urinary incontinence or loss of bladder control is also a symptom of uterine fibroid growth. Sometimes, excess pressure from fibroid can weaken the uterine muscle as well as the bladder muscles.
Uterine Fibroid Treatment in Modern Medicine
Uterine fibroid treatment in the form of invasive procedures as hysterectomies should be avoided unless it is absolutely necessary.
Symptomatic fibroids significantly reduce the quality of life of the patient. A range of uterine fibroid treatment options are available in pharmaceutical sciences:
- Hysterstopic myomectomy.
- Endometrial ablation.
- Vaginal myomectomy.
- Hormonal therapy: Beware that hormonal therapies can lead to menopause complications like hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings and irritability. Aside that, women with a history of blood clotting, cancer or are smoking even after 35 years of age should avoid hormonal therapy.
An Ayurvedic Approach to Fibroids
In Ayurveda, uterine fibroid can be compared to the health condition of having a “Granthi”, which literally translates to tumor.
Thus, the fibroids located in the uterus (Garbashaya) are described as Garbashyagata Granthi (intrauterine growth).
According to Ayurveda, uterine fibroid occur when a Kapha dosha imbalance vitiates Rakta (blood tissues), mamsa (muscle tissues) and meda (fatty tissues). Thus, it leads to a build up of knotty, round and hard swellings in the garbashaya (uterus).
Now, Pitta dosha and Vata dosha may also be present in the later stages. This leads to heat, inflammation, excess pain and spreading of fibroids.
Types of Uterine Fibroids
- Vataja granthi: It is an elongated and painful mass. This corresponds to subserosal fibroid.
- Pittja granthi: This is characterized by formation of pus, inflammation and distortion of the uterine cavity. It corresponds to submucosal fibroids.
- Kaphaja granthi: It is a localized mass with mild pain. Cervical and intramural fibroid are same.
- Medogranthi: Happens due to excess body fat or poor fat metabolism. It causes mild pelvic pain.
- Sidra granthi: This is characterized by a quick onset with multiple symptoms of uterine fibroid and associated health risks.
Such in depth classification of the uterine fibroid based on the underlying causes and their specific symptoms allows an Ayurvedic Doctor to advise on patient specific Ayurvedic treatment for the uterine fibroids.
Ayurvedic Treatment for Uterine Fibroid
An Ayurveda doctor will provide you with prescription for Ayurvedic medicines, dietary changes, yoga and mental wellness techniques to reduce inflammation, treat hormonal imbalance and relieve pelvic pain. Selection of Ayurvedic herbal formulations is based on your specific health symptoms.
At an early stage, diet, lifestyle and herbal medicines are highly effective to cure and naturally shrink the fibroids. For advanced stages and complications, surgery may be required.
Ayurvedic Treatment and Herbal Remedies
Here are the steps involved in Ayurveda treatment for Uterine Fibroids. The natural herbal remedies that we will cover for fibroids treatment are based on the following steps:
- Ayurvedic Medicines to detox, promote hormone balance and boost fertility
- Healthy Lifestyle
- Ayurvedic Diet to nourish and strengthen the reproductive system
- Exercise and Yoga to promote mental wellness and tone the body
1. Ayurvedic Medicines for Fibroids Treatment
These Ayurvedic formulations can be consumed upon consultation with Ayurvedic doctor, who can advise you on specific dosage and directions.
Ayurvedic medicines for fibroids provide an effective way to treat hormone imbalance, detoxify and purify the blood tissues, reduce inflammation, prevent irregular bleeding and pelvic pain.
All the herbal remedies and Ayurvedic formulations that have been shared in this post are for information purpose only. All of these are potent Ayurvedic medicines that should be taken under the supervision of a qualified Ayurvedic doctor only. Do not indiscriminately use Ayurvedic herbs. It may cause more harm than benefit.
Amla is an effective herbal medicine for natural detoxification process. It is an anti-inflammatory agent, so it removes free radicals and helps to treat hormonal imbalance.
2. Licorice Root
Licorice is a sweet tasting herbal medicine that helps to balance hormones and reduces digestive symptoms as bloating. Specifically, it helps to reduce high Estrogen and high Androgen level. This reduces the growth and spread of fibroids.
Ashoka bark acts as a tonic for uterus. It promotes ovulation, establishes hormone balance and significantly reduces high Estrogen levels. Thus, it is highly effective to restrict the development and growth of fibroids.
4. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera has a toning effect on the reproductive system, specifically the uterus. It is an emmenagogue, meaning it helps to establish regular menstrual flow. It significantly reduces inflammation, pelvic pain and lower abdomen pain.
Lodhra is highly effective in reducing uterine disorders and heavy bleeding. It helps to regulate ovarian hormones, rejuvenates female reproductive system, establishes regular ovulation and improves fertility.
Triphala deeply cleanses our body and helps to flush out wastes and toxins. It has powerful antioxidants to rejuvenate, inhibit inflammation, promote healthy build of body cells, and blood purification.
Shatavari nourishes the female reproductive system and improves the fertility health in a woman. It enhances follicle production and ovulation and prepares uterus for conception.
8. Dandelion Flower and Greens
The bitter tasting herb dandelion is extremely useful to pacify both Kapha and Pitta Dosha. This helps to restrict heavy bleeding, development and growth of the fibroids. It is also effective to treat early stages of uterine cancer.
It is one of the best common herb that acts as a natural pain killer, detoxifies and supports digestive system. Ginger reduces intensity of menstrual cramps and elevates the level of brain chemicals. Take it as ginger tea.
2. Ayurvedic Diet for Fibroids Treatment
Poor diet and dietary habits create nutritional deficiencies and toxin buildup in the body. These are the 2 primary causes of Uterine Fibroid.
Hence, when you improve your diet, you also improve your chances of shrinking the fibroids.
Here are Ayurvedic diet guidelines to find relief from fibroid:
- Include blood purifying and antioxidants rich foods in your daily diet. Some examples are: watercress, green leafy vegetables, cruciferous vegetables, raisins, green tea, ginger and garlic.
- Drink a lot of water to keep yourself hydrated at all times.
- Eat vegetables and fruits that help to balance hormones. Some examples are: Apricots, green banana, cherry, coconut, kiwi, lemon, carrots, green beans, leeks, spinach, oats, quinoa and rice.
- Avoid or take in moderation animal products like meat, dairy and eggs.
- Prefer cooling and normal temperature beverages such as coconut water, still water, and herbal teas.
- Eliminate foods with a hot potency and hot temperature such as chilli and cayenne pepper.
- Reduce the use of caffeine, stimulants, refined sugar, and cold drinks.
- Avoid untimely meals, multiple meals, late night foods, and snacks.
- Stop the consumption of processed foods and packaged foods.
3. Ayurvedic Lifestyle Tips for Fibroids
Ayurvedic lifestyle tips provide guidance daily routine that helps to establish hormone balance mental wellness. Here’s what you should do:
- Manage and reduce stress levels by either avoiding stressful activities or by better planning. Stress is one sure way to get your hormones out of whack.
- Practice regular meditation to help you relax and reduce your stress levels.
- Reduce your exposure to endocrine disrupting materials such as BPA and Dioxins. They trigger Estrogen dominance and make you more prone to uterine fibroids growth.
- Restrict your use of hormone-based contraceptives. If you can, avoid them completely.
- Avoid Smoking, Alcohol and any other stimulants. All of these disturb the hormone balance and create additional toxin build up in the body.
- Keep a regular, again, regular, sleep pattern in the night. Learn here on Ayurvedic guidelines for good sleep.
4. Fibroids Relief with Yoga
Yoga helps to promote circulation and hence reduce the symptoms and growth of fibroids. Yoga therapy is also applied in Ayurvedic medicine to address health concerns. Here are some yoga poses that are helpful to reduce fibroids.
- Cat cow pose
- Frog pose
- Half Lord of the Fish Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
- Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
- Plow Pose (Halasana)
Uterine fibroid are common in women over the age of 40, although they can occur at any age. Most of the time fibroids are benign and they resolve on their own. Yet, if you are experiencing fibroid symptoms; it is important to speak to a doctor to find out the cause.
Ayurveda offers effective natural ways to treat and shrink uterine fibroid. Ayurvedic diet, lifestyle and medication provides a holistic natural avenue for permanent relief from health symptoms at the root cause level.
Consult with Medhya’s Ayurvedic Health Experts to get your personalised health plan involving prescription for Ayurvedic medicine, diet, yoga and lifestyle guidelines.
1. How do Uterine Fibroids affect fertility, pregnancy and childbirth?
Fibroids might, or might not have an effect at all on fertility, pregnancy, or childbirth. This depends on the position of the fibroid.
Submucosal fibroids pose the greatest danger, while pedunculated fibroids, particularly the ones borne outside the uterus, pose no threat.
Again, these are only risk factors, not absolute facts.
A woman with fibroid can be pregnant and deliver with no problems whatsoever. After all, 80% of women have uterine fibroids, most of them undiagnosed.
The following risks may be presented though:
- Recurrent Miscarriages
- Preterm delivery
- Intrauterine Growth Restriction(IUGR)
- Mispositioning of baby
- Risk of placental abruption
- Increased risk of need for caesarean section
- Postpartum hemorrhage due to decreased ability of uterus to contract
- Bleeding in first trimester
2. Do fibroid regrow after Hysterectomy (Surgery)?
Uterine Fibroids are often vascular in nature. This means they contain a well-developed blood vessel system support the living tissues. That’s why the surgery to remove the uterine fibroids often needs to be repeated as they can regrow.
However, if left unattended, they may keep growing and eventually create significant discomfort.
3. Do fibroids get worse during perimenopause?
Fibroid have been reported to be present in at least 25% of women. But that is even judging by those who actually get checked. The truth is that, up to 80% of all women will have uterine fibroids by the time they reach menopause.
Usually, the occurrence or troublesome symptoms of uterine fibroids get aggravated when a woman is in her late 30s and 40s or in perimenopause.
This is because, a woman is undergoing hormonal transition at this age and fibroids thrive on hormone imbalances. After menopause, fibroids shrink and it is unusual for them to cause problems.