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No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

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  #21  
Unread 03-28-2006, 08:25 AM
wow, so many replies , thanks for sharing

I didn't know this would open such a can of worms, but honestly I feel better knowing I'm not alone. To Aussie Chick, I had a D&C for severe endo. many years ago, and a myomectomy for a large hanging fibroid many years ago. I have explored and researched every single option. Ablation (painful and not always successful, ultrasound heat for shrinking fibroids, very expensive and not always successful, and removal of all the fibroids I have, is just as complicated a surgery as removing the uterus, because there are many many blood vessels to tie off, and many adhesions left inside the uterus, and no guarantee that the uterus will return to its normal size or that more fibroids will not keep growing etc etc. I am 49 and could have 3-4 more years before I go through menopause, who knows what size uterus I'll have by then. If things werent' growing so rapidly , from normal size uterus (6 centimeters to 19 centimeters in less than 2 years,) I wouldn't be so concerned. Second opinion dr. said she had a women who waited and the uterus began pressing on urethra and shut off her kidneys and she wound up in emergency surgery. I don't want those kind of surprises. This is not something I decided on hap-hazardly, I've been mulling it over now for 6 months.
Thanks for everyones openness.
janet
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  #22  
Unread 03-28-2006, 08:32 AM
No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

What a lot of opinions on this! I was in your situation for a long time, with fibroids that seemed asymptomatic. They began growing more rapidly, and now they're a 20-22 week size (sorry; I'm not sure how that compares to your 19 cm). A few months ago, they did start causing some symptoms--some pain, some bloating, some cramping, frequent urination. I'm happy I waited for 13 years before having a hysterectomy, and now I'm getting one because there's a good chance the enlarged uterus is contributing to frequent hernias.

Progesterone is NOT a good idea--progesterone is actually necessary for fibroid growth, and RU-486 (a progesterone blocker) is an extremely effective medication to shrink fibroids. In the US, it's still experimental for that, so I'm not recommending that you try it--but I am strongly recommending that you use a great deal of caution before trying to shrink fibroids with progesterone. It's not a miracle cure for anything, even though a lot of website promote it as such.

Since you're 49, you might consider trying Lupron briefly (not until menopause). Some fibroids respond much better to Lupron than others, so if your uterus shrank significantly under Lupron, that would suggest that menopause will also bring significant shrinkage. In that case, waiting a couple years until menopause might be a reasonable option. Or more likely, if Lupron didn't help much, then you would know with more certainty that a hysterectomy now might make more sense than waiting for menopause.

Good luck.
  #23  
Unread 03-28-2006, 10:13 AM
No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

YeJa, I hear more pro's from getting the hysterectomy then cons. Get it done, get it out! I am deciding to take it all out, I am 49, have had 2 healthy kids. My mom had a hysterecomtomy in her 40's and my sister in her 50's. They both did fine. You do NOT need a huge fibroid growing in there only to possibly cause more problems. I had no idea mine was in there either until I complained of peri menopausal symptoms. I had an internal ultrasound & they found my huge fibroid and who knows what other ones are in there! I can't deal with it, I want it OUT!!!!!!!!!! ITs scary for sure, but I would be more scared not to do anything. But that is me, everyone as you read is different. WIsh you luck!
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  #24  
Unread 03-28-2006, 02:07 PM
No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

Thanks Aus Chick for reminding us all that there are some other ways to address issues besides surgical removal.

I know there are many stories of success with things like organic foods (no estrogen mimicking, etc. from pesticide residue) and hormone therapies. I wish more research would be done on the root causes (I am not satisfied they know) of fibroids and a specific natural solution for prevention or treatment could be described.

I encourage all you sisters to read as much as you can about the impact of environmental or lifestyle choices on your hormones. And certainly to question every doc that jumps straight to surgery as a solution without considering less invasive techniques.

That said, here I am 9 days pre-op. I switched my family to organic groceries and made some lifestyle changes. I tried BC pills and bio-identical progesterone (both with drastic horrible results for me - LOTS more bleeding that wouldn't stop, one D&C, and horrible mood swings). The list goes on.

I WANTED to beat this without surgery. I wanted focused ultrasound or UAE to be an option for me. But at some point, I conceded defeat.

I know for me, I had to try everything before I would open my mind to this enormous operation.

I assume every one of you needed to get here at your own pace and with your other options explored to the degree you felt necessary.

I can understand the sisters that post how GLAD they were to have the operation, but I am not there yet. I can see the advantages post-op or I wouldn't be here, but my overwhelming feelings are those of sadness and grief and failure.

I look forward to the day when research succeeds in finding causes and cures for fibroids, endo, and adeno, etc. instead of lining us all up to cut out the offending organs.

I support all you sisters, however you reached this junction and even if you are still on your journey!! We all rock!

-k.
  #25  
Unread 03-28-2006, 02:46 PM
No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

Veja...I think you PMed me recently and um I forgot to respond!! Sorry, I read the message, got distracted and forgot entirely about it!
I think you asked me about the size of my uterus. The doctor told me when he removed it that it was 4 times the size of normal. Whatever normal is. I have been pregnant 3 times and to me it felt the size of a 4 month pregnancy. My fundus almost hit my bellybutton by the time of my surgery.
When I had my ultrasound late January I was told my a-symptomatic fibroid was 7-9 cm. By the time of my surgery the surgeon said it had grown to 11 cm. That was roughly a month and a half. He also said it showed no signs of degeneration and was very "healthy." I am 38 and probably many years from menopause. They took my fsh level and it was very low. Just like you I struggled with this decision. Two doctors advised the hyst because it was growing so rapidly. I went through hell making this decision. There are alot of things you can try to reduce the fibroid. Maybe they will work, maybe they won't. It has to be your decision. I went for it. I've had some minor issues that are normal following this surgery. I had bad gas for awhile, constipation, and most recently I felt great and over did my activities over the weekend. Yesterday I was very sore. Today I'm better. I'm hoping/thinking that I just over did things and will feel great again soon.
The fact is that MOST women do recover fully from this surgery. Some don't and for them it's very difficult. I felt like I was rolling the dice when I decided for the hyst. But odds were in my favor that I would be okay. It would have been a gamble for me to leave it in there to grow bigger while I was trying other options too. I decided to throw my dice towards the hysterectomy. So far so good. And I had doctor's who backed up my decision.
Don't let the horror stories scare you. But be glad you do know about them in case you do experience a complication you will know you aren't alone. Good luck with whatever you decide!
  #26  
Unread 03-28-2006, 03:39 PM
No Real Symptoms , why am I doing this

yeja,

the thing that amazes me 8 weeks post-op, is that I did not realize I was having symptoms before my surgery, yet I was. I was not bleeding or in pain like a lot of other women. I actually went in to the hospital in October for my gall bladder, and they found a stone. I commented that my lower abdomen was swollen, and was blown off. I did have one really sharp Ovarian pain before that period, and that stayed in my mind. The day after the ER, I was reading "O" magazine, and read an article about the silent qualities of Ovarian Cancer. I took myself back to the ER, and they did an exam and an ultrasound...and said I had something, just not sure what. I spent the next few months investigating and getting insurance lined up. I did have a 25 cm tumor, which weighed 5000 grams when removed! The doctor advised me, once she had a CT scan of it, to have a TAH because the likelihood of future surgeries and growths were high. I had it done, as well as my gall bladder removed in one procedure. I am SO glad I do not face another procedure, as it was enough for me! I feel amazing now....so much more like myself. What I have come to realize is aside from the obvious bloating and discomfort, I had hormonal imbalances and fatigue that were slowly wearing me down. I felt depressed and had little self-confidence. Since my surgery, I am the same feisty girl I always was!! Ask questions, and do not doubt that inner voice that tells you that something is wrong...it more than likely is. Best of luck to you,

Judy
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