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The Most Common Treatments for Uterine Fibroids

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Uterine fibroids are benign growths in the womb that might or might not cause symptoms, being often discovered during routine pelvic exam. The cause that leads to the appearance of fibroid is not fully understood, but specialists consider hormonal fluctuations to be the trigger. The symptoms of uterine fibroids are extremely varied, from irregular or very heavy and very long menstrual periods to pelvic pain and lumps in the breasts and from hot flashes and night sweats to frequent urination and backaches. While uterine fibroids are usually benign, they might interfere with the woman’s ability to become pregnant.

Uterine fibroids are usually considered treatable – here are some of the most common treatment options.

Watchful Waiting

The women who have asymptomatic fibroids usually do not need treatment. However, fibroids might start changing anytime, therefore regular visits to the gynecologist are very important for making sure that any modification in the size and the number of the fibroids is discovered in time and addressed properly.


The medication used for the treatment of uterine fibroids are intended to regulate the hormonal imbalances behind the problem, mainly targeting the restoration of the estrogen-progesterone balance or the shrinkage of the fibroids. Here are some options:

  • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonists – these medications block the production of estrogen and progesterone for a short time, discontinuing menstruation and putting the body into a state that is similar to menopause. During the treatment, the hormone supply to the fibroids will be cut, causing them to shrink and in some case, even to disappear completely;
  • Intrauterine devices that release progestin – these devices might help with the symptoms related to fibroids, but they do not make the fibroids shrink or disappear. The devices have contraceptive effects, therefore they prevent pregnancy;
  • Pain medication and help with heavy bleeding – these drugs help only with the symptoms related to fibroids, they do not cause them to become smaller or to disappear.

Surgical Treatment

There are several surgical methods used as fibroid treatment, selected based on the patient’s age, the size, number and position of the fibroids in the uterus and the patient’s intention to bear children in the future:

  • Uterine artery embolization – this method involves the injection of small particles into the arteries that supply the uterus with blood. The particles will cut off the blood supply to the fibroids, causing them to shrink or to disappear;
  • Radiofrequency ablation – this method also targets the blood supply to the fibroids through a laparoscopic or trans-cervical intervention;
  • Myomectomy – this surgical option involves the laparoscopic removal of the fibroids without removing the uterus;
  • Hysterectomy – the most radical treatment option of them all, hysterectomy involves the removal of the entire uterus.

Of all the surgical methods, hysterectomy is known to be the only permanent solution to uterine fibroids, but it is a major surgical intervention that ends the patient’ ability to bear children and induces menopause instantly. The results achieved through the other options might or might not be permanent – in many cases, uterine fibroids grow back and start causing problems again after a certain period, usually within a couple years after the intervention.  Find out the latest in uterine fibroid treatments through an interventional radiologist near me in Fort Collins for proven results.

When to Get Treatment for Depression?

Therapists Can Help Change Unhappiness to Happiness

Everyone feels down and sad occasionally, but those feelings are usually of a short duration and in most cases, they are triggered by life events or situations that must be handled. Such difficult periods are not to be confused with depression, though – a condition that is a very common medical condition that can seriously affect the depressed person’s health and the life of the depression sufferer as well as the life of everyone around. Fortunately, depression can be efficiently treated, so here are the symptoms that indicate the need for medical treatment.

The Symptoms of Depression

One of the principle differences between a difficult and saddening period and depression is the time frame – if the dark thoughts and feeling persist for more than a couple of weeks and they seem to become worse, it might be a good idea to seek professional help.

Every person is different and every depression sufferer experiences different symptoms. The most common signs of depression include constant sadness, the loss of interest in activities that the person used to consider enjoyable, changes in appetite, otherwise unexplained weight gain or weight loss, insomnia, fatigue, difficulties focusing and concentration, intense feelings of guilt or shame and, in the most severe cases, thoughts of suicide.

How Depression Is Diagnosed

When someone turns to a medical professional with symptoms of depression, the doctor will first of all order specific tests, such as blood tests and other lab tests, to rule out physical conditions that can mimic the symptoms of depressions, such impaired thyroid function, brain tumor or a hormonal imbalance. If no such underlying conditions are found, the doctor will probably refer the patient to a therapist or to a psychiatrist.

The mental health professional that the patient turns to will start the treatment with talk therapy to reveal the most recent event that has triggered a depressive episode and to map the patient’s history of previous depressive events. After one or several talking sessions, the specialist determines the best course of treatment and discusses it with the patient. The options are varied and usually very efficient (almost all depression sufferers experience relief as a result of treatment) and they might include the prescription of ant-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs, continued talk therapy, cognitive and behavior therapy or the combination of all these methods.

Anti-depressant medication might have almost instant effects – these drugs improve the patient’s mood and ameliorate the physical symptoms of depression within 1-2 weeks of taking them. They are often used only for a short time, to help with the therapy process in the beginning, then the selected therapeutic approach takes over. Cognitive therapy has been found to be among the most efficient approaches – the method focuses on improving the patient’s abilities to cope with negative feelings as well as with stress as well as on transforming the patient’s way of thinking.

Depending on the severity of the depression, the treatment might take only a couple of weeks or it might last for years; so it’s important to search for a therapist near me to find someone close in proximity to where you live, until all the traumas and emotional issues that have led to the depression are revealed and coped with.

Consulting A Urologist In The Houston Area – What To Expect From Your First Appointment?

In the Houston area, urology is a very busy medical branch, mostly due to the fact that it treats so many various problems associated with the urinary system and genitourinary tract, in patients of all ages.

Making an appointment

Patients may be referred to a urogynecologist Houston has by their primary physicians, but they may also seek help on their own when they suspect that something is not quite right and indicates a condition involving kidneys, bladder or the reproductive system. Once you was referred to a urologist or found one, it is time to make an appointment, which involves calling the office to establish the date and the hour for meeting the doctor, as well as to ask what you must bring with you (maybe prior imaging studies, proof of current medication etc.).

Meeting your urologist for the first time

  • Completing paperwork

Your first urology appointment will start with general discussions and paperwork – actually almost like any other medical appointment. Besides official paperwork filed by the doctor, the patient may also be required to complete a questionnaire, or a symptom score (these are used especially in the case of incontinence, infertility or prostate issues).

  • Providing a urine sample

Patients will be given recipients and the conditions necessary to provide a urine sample, therefore, it is advisable to drink some water before your appointment.

  • Going to the exam room

Before the examination, the urologist will ask you questions in order to clarify your medical history. It is very important to be able to provide exact information about the treatments that you underwent, current medications and dosages, even if they are not necessarily related to the urologic problems. You must also describe your symptoms and their severity/ recurrence, as accurately as possible, in order to help your doctor make a good diagnosis.

  • The physical examination

Typically, general examination includes a complete genital exam, a pelvic exam for women and a prostate assessment for men. Your doctor may insist on some things, depending on the informant that you previously provided.

  • Undergoing certain tests

This may not be necessary right from your first appointment, but some urologists may request you to go through an MRI scan, a CT scan or a sonography, in order to help them correctly diagnose the problem. Your urologist may also recommend an office-based procedure, which may consist in a minimally-invasive procedure (a cystoscopy, urodynamics or a biopsy), performed ambulatory, outside of hospitals, so on an outpatient basis.

  • Getting a diagnosis and treatment recommendations

Your urologist should explain your medical condition and help you understand it correctly. Treatment may include medical management or surgery but either way you must be fully informed of your options, of the benefits and the risks.

Things you must bring with you at your first appointment with your urologist

Houston area urology specialists who see patients for the first time typically ask them to bring some things to their first appointment: medical history card, proof of recent changes to their medical record, prescription drug, alternative therapies that they are going through, as well as a complete list of their symptoms.