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Ayurvedic Approaches for Managing Uterine Fibroids: Ayurveda Treatment Remedies



Uterine Fibroids – beyond the basics

Ayurvedic management – from the present to the future

 

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is crucial for women throughout their life cycle to support overall well-being and prevent various health issues. 

Uterine  fibroids or myomas, benign tumors of the human uterus, are the single most common indication for hysterectomy. They are clinically apparent in up to 25% of women and cause significant morbidity, including prolonged or heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pressure or pain, and, in rare cases, reproductive dysfunction


They are extremely common, they are often called women’s “silent health problem” because many of us don’t pay attention to this in early stages . Infertility is a rising concern due to many reasons including hormonal imbalance, poor lifestyle choices, PCOS, etc. Uterine Fibroids are also a leading cause of infertility

OurAcharyas placed great importance  on  nidana parivarjanam (avoid etiological influences) and has explained  the significance of dinacharya and ritu charya  and Rajaswalacharya(a series of practice prescribed for a menstruating lady to protect her uterus )  in the development of healthy women. So, there are solutions in ayurveda to prevent anomalies like Uterine fibroids with the help of Ayurvedic drugs and lifestyle changes.

What are uterine fibroids ?

Fibroids in the uterus are benign and non-cancerous growths that develop from the muscle tissues of uterus. Uterine fibroids are typically found during the middle and later reproductive years. The cause and growth of fibroid can be hereditary and may also be also related to hormonal  imbalance.

Fibroids in the uterus can be of varying sizes  like Pea-sized to melon-sized .In some cases one  to multiple fibroid can be seen. Majority of fibroids are small in size and do not produce any symptoms while in some cases size, location and number of fibroids can cause severe  gynecological symptoms . According to the National Institute of Health, about 80% of females have uterine fibroid by the age of 50. If the uterine fibroid develops, it continues to grow until menopause.

After menopause, the level of oestrogen falls, and the fibroid eventually shrinks.

Complications of fibroid may be very  rare, but it may lead to a drop in  haemoglobin levels and results in  fatigue. 

In pregnant females, it can  increase the risk of fetal growth restriction too

Uterine fibroids may cause a number of different symptoms. 

Here are some of the more typical signs: 

·        Periods that are very heavy or last for a long time and anaemia due to that

·        Pain or pressure in the pelvis 

·        Urinary frequency increases / Difficulty emptying the bladder

·        Constipation 

·        Pain in the back or the legs 

·        Anaemia due to heavy periods

·        Pain during intercourse

·        Swelling in the lower abdomen

·        Weight gain

·        Painful and difficult defecation due to the pressure on the rectum

Other possible symptoms include:

Fertility issues

Generally fibroids do not  disturb the regular ovulation but it can deform the inner lining of the uterus and hence can increase the chance of infertility

Repeated abortions

The women finds it difficult to sustain the foetus in case of uterine fibroid

Labour problems

Chances of a  normal delivery  may be poor in case of a fibroid uterus .It may result in a c section ,preterm delivery or a breech presentation of the baby and there may be a possibilities that labour may fail to progress

 

Why do women get fibroids ?

Though the exact causes are unknown ,some of the prevalent factors  are like

Genetic –There is a increased risk of uterine fibroid if you have a genetic inheritance  in the family .

Hormones – Progesterone and oestrogen are the  hormones responsible for the growth of fibroids . They  stimulate the development of the uterine lining during each menstrual cycle in preparation for pregnancy. Fibroids usually contain more progesterone and estrogen receptors than normal uterine muscle cells do and  they have a tendency  to shrink due to a reduction  in hormone production after menopause.

Age – Fibroid is more common in women in ’30s and ’40s.

Obesity – Females who are overweight are at high risk of developing fibroids.

Pregnancy – During pregnancy, the production of oestrogen and progesterone hormones in the body increases that causes the fibroid to develop and grow rapidly.

Insulin growth factors help the body to maintain tissues may affect the growth of fibroid

Poor and unhealthy Eating habits – Eating  lot of red meat is linked with increased risk of fibroids. Eating many green vegetables seems to protect a female from developing fibroids. Food deficient in Vitamin D, dairy and fruit also increase the risk of fibroids.

 

How are uterine fibroids classified ?

Intramural fibroids: They are the most common type of fibroid and appear within the muscular wall of the uterus.

Submucosal fibroids: These types of tumours develop in the middle muscle layer(myometrium) beneath the inner lining of the uterine wall and protrude into the uterine cavity. 

Subserosal fibroids: Also known as serosa, they extend beyond the uterine wall and may grow large enough to make your womb appear bigger.They  sometimes develop a stem which is a slender base that supports the tumour known as pedunculated fibroids.

Cervical Uterine fibroid:Cervical fibroids take root in cervix on the neck of the womb.

How does ayurveda look into uterine fibroids

There are reference under garbhasaya granthi in ayurveda correlating it to uretine fibroids . Uterine fibroids are growths in mamsadhatu of uterus (growth in muscular tissue of uterus). It is a kapha dominant disorder. Other two doshas such as pitha and vata are also involved but to a lesser degree.

The pathogenesis of Fibroid is the combination of Kapha and the morbid Tridoshas, which cause a rounded hard swelling in the uterus and a variety of menstrual cycle disorders  like menorrhagia, metrorrhagia, dysmenorrheal  and infertility.

 

In the modern era of a lack of exercise, busy lifestyle, intake of junk food, etc had lead to Ama formation and Disruption in agni . This in turn vitiates Doshas like Kapha, Vata and Dushyas like Raktha, Rasa, Medas, Mamsa, and Arthava resulting in Dhatwagnimandya leading to the formation of Garbhasayagranthi.

The treatment focuses on balancing the doshas and strengthening the immune system.

Panchakarma treatment can help in balancing the doshas, which in turn help with the management of fibroids. 

Panchakarma therapies that can be useful for fibroid uterus:

Virechana : Detoxification through Therapeutic purgation aims to eliminate toxins 

Basti: This therapy involves the administration of medicated oils or decoctions through the rectum. It helps in balancing the Vata dosha and can be useful for managing the pain and discomfort associated with fibroids.

Nasya: This therapy involves the administration of medicated oils or herbal powders through the nostrils which can help in balancing the hormonal levels

Shirodhara: This therapy involves the pouring of warm herbal oil over the forehead. It can help in reducing stress which is one of the aggravating factor

Swedana: This therapy involves the use of herbal steam to promote sweating and detoxification.

Uttara vasthy – a kind of therapeutic urethral douche which can promote the reduction the size of the fibroid and promote fertility

Other modules of treatment includes

  • Change in diet

  • Life style modification

  • Specific Yoga postures targeted at fibroids

  • Specific Ayurvedic internal  medicines

Ayurvedic diet

A  increase the intake of kapha and pittha  pacifying foods.Kapha pacifying food  will reduce ama. Pittha pacifying foods is  helpful in balancing hormone changes and in arresting bleeding. Food and herbs with bitter, astringent and pungent qualities have drying and healing qualities.

Lifestyle changes that may mitigate fibroid symptoms

·      Waking up before kapha time and doing appropriate and moderate exercises to reduce excessive kapha dosha

·      Having early  dinner

·      Reducing hot sun and excessive exposure to heat

·      Reduce excessive hot drinks

·      Reducing alcoholic beverages

·      Anger/stress  management

·      Yoga

Ayurvedic herbs for fibroids

Single herbs such as Asoka, Guggulu, Kanchanara, Varuna ,kumari,,tila ,kulatha ,kumara ,lasuna ,hingu ,eranda ,danti can help in management of  uterine fiborids.

Ayurvedic medicines such as Pushyanuga choornam, Chandraprabha tablet, Kanchanara guggulu, varanadi kashayam ,rajapravartini vati ,sukumara kashayam ,gandharva hasthadi kashayam ,sukumara lehyam ,varanadi ghritham are also very effective for arresting bleeding, reducing pain and discomfort and in preventing further growth of tumor.

Home Remedies

·        Castor oil:  is a herbal oil, taken as a supplement to help occasional constipation.

·        Garlic has natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that discourage the growth of uterine fibroids. Eating 3 to 5 garlic cloves daily is recommended

·        Tila has natural cure to prevent uterine fibroids due to its lekhana properties

·        Kulatha – intake of kulatha kashaya helps in rectifying the fibroids

Curcumin: This remedy helps the body get rid of the free radicals due to its high antioxidant content. It helps in reducing the inflammation in the uterus and thus treat uterine fibroids.

Ashwagandha: Ashwagandha has medicinal properties that boost your overall wellbeing in addition to boosting your immune system. It is also known to improve the functioning of the brain and treat impotency.

Ginger – adding ginger extract daily can help  as anti inflammatory to avoid the fibroids

Dos and donts

You can add

·        Grains like barley, millets, wheat,

·        All gourd veggies

·        Fruits like apples, pomegranates, figs,

·        Ghee in small quantities.

·        If there is heavy bleeding, then go for Vitamin C-rich foods.

·        Avoid Foods like excessive meat consumption, fast food, processed foods, and canned or frozen meals.

 

Yoga practice –Some of the yoga postures that may help are Suptabaddhakonasana, Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, and Suptavirasana.

 

What should we eat in Ayurveda for fibroids?

Preferable fibre rich foods ,Vitamin D and calcium rich foods ,Fresh green colourd vegetables can be added in plenty to avoid fibroids

How can I shrink my fibroids without surgery?

Following certain dietary changes,  such as  lessening of red meat ,fermented food ,increased intake of fresh and green vegetables  and whole grain and following certain herbal remedies can help you to avoid surgery for fibroids

Can fibroid be cured permanently?

Fibroid can be removed permenantly only by hysterectomy

How do I stop fibroids from growing?

A healthy diet and a strong immune syste can help to shrink the fibroid fastly

How can you dissolve fibroids without surgery?

By following a healthy diet ,regular exercise and a good life style ,and by incorporating herbal remedies at the right time can help the above

How can I remove fibroids naturally?

Fibroid may be removed or shrunken naturally if you can facilitate by exercising, eating a healthy diet, and using herbal remedies

Which fruit can shrink fibroid?

Apples ,tomatoes and pear can shrink the fibroid naturally due to presence of  flavonoid known as phloretin which is an estrogen blocker.

Can banana reduce fibroid?

Being rich in potassium ,it can help to relieve the symptoms like cramps due to fibroids

Can hot water shrink fibroids?

Applying hot water pack on lower abdomen can ease the pain

Which Ayurvedic treatment is best for fibroids?

Panchakarma treatments like vasthy ,uttaravashy and virechana can help in alleviating fibroids

What is the best food to shrink fibroids?

Foods like  apple ,pear,cabbage ,citric fruits can help to shrink fibroids

Does uterine fibroid adversely affect obstetric outcome of pregnancy?

Yes it can .It may lead to preterm labour ,foetal malformations  and deliveru complications

Are fibroids life-threatening?

No,but for any cancerous growth detected

Are the symptoms of fibroid similar to all?

It may not be necessary to experience the same symptoms by all

Can Ayurveda treat fibroid?

Yes it can ,provided detected in right time

Can uterine fibroids affect fertility?

Depending on their location in the uterus, fibroids have been implicated in recurrent pregnancy loss as well as infertility

Is fibroid cancerous?

Most of them are benign ,Leiomyosarcomas are rare to happen which are cancerous

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