Fibroids: Understanding Endometrial Ablation
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Endometrial ablation is one of the many minimally-invasive methods used to treat heavy menstrual bleeding due to fibroids or other causes. It is very effective in treating the bleeding that can accompany uterine fibroids in 40-60% of those treated, causing endometrial ablation to gain popularity, among other options, for the treatment of fibroids.
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How It Works
Ablation procedures remove (destroy) the lining of the uterus, thereby eliminating heavy menstrual bleeding, in some cases, or simply decreasing the bleeding in others. Abnormal bleeding is typically a result of bleeding from the uterine lining , destruction of this lining can lead to decreased bleeding or no menses without having a hysterectomy. Because the uterus is preserved, this is also called a uterine -sparing procedure.
There are no incisions and this procedure can be done in as little as five or 10 minutes in the office or in a hospital out-patient setting. No recovery time is necessary, and,therefore, no time off from work is required except for the day of the procedure.
The amount of anesthesia needed is minimal, and it can even be performed using local numbing medicine placed in the cervix (a small local pain killer similar to what is done in the dentist’s office).
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Things To Consider
As the inside lining or nest is essentially destroyed, the procedure should not be considered if there is even a remote chance that you may want children.
Not only will the nest or cavity of the uterus be unable to properly receive the embryo, if a pregnancy successfully attaches to the nest/ lining, the pregnancy could be frought with potentially life-threatening difficulties such as placenta acreta, a condition where the placenta or afterbirth does not separate/detach after a delivery as it should. This can lead to extreme bleeding and possibly an emergency hysterectomy under some circumstances.
There are numerous types of endometrial ablation methods. A consultation with your doctor to discuss your family planning wishes, while providing you with options for treatment will be a good time to address these concerns.
Visit the BlackDoctor.org Fibroids center for more articles.