Fibroids are non-cancerous swellings arising from the womb. They occur in about one in four women of reproductive age group. Fibroids are classified depending on their location into
- Subserous - arising from the outer wall of the womb
- Intramural - arising from the wall of the wombs
- Submucous - arising from the inner lining of the womb
Depending on the size and location of the fibroid, the symptoms wmay differ. Some of them are
- Increased bleeding during periods
- Pain during periods
- Heaviness or lump in the belly
- Inability to conceive
Fibroid from the uterus
Fibroids are usually diagnosed by clinical examination and ultrasound examination. All fibroids need not be removed. Only those that are big interfere with pregnancy and cause heavy bleeding need removal. Medication may relieve symptoms of pain and heavy bleeding to some extent, but do not make the fibroids disappear.
The conventional surgical treatment for fibroid removal is called myomectomy. This is traditionally done by taking a large incision in the abdomen.
Fibroids can be removed through small keyhole incisions in the abdomen. Small 5mm incisions are made in the belly, telescope and instruments are introduced and the fibroid can be removed through these small incisions irrespective of the size and location. This procedure is called laparoscopic myomectomy. The advantages of keyhole surgery to the patient are
- Helps in early recovery
- Decreases hospital stay
- Reduces pain
- Enables quick return to normal activities.
The technological advancement to key hole surgery today is Robotic surgery. Here, robotic arms are controlled by the surgeon through finger controls and the articulated instruments help in precise surgical procedure.
Da Vinci Robot
Women above the age of 45 years and those who have completed their family can undergo removal of fibroids along with the uterus through laparoscopic hysterectomy.
Laparoscopic surgeries require a lot of skill and advanced technology. This procedure can be done even if the Patient has had previous cesarean section or any previous abdominal surgery. The pain is minimal and bleeding is minimal in this procedure. Removal of these fibroids laparoscopically is the most patient friendly procedure with excellent outcomes.
Don't ignore menstrual problems; get examined, investigated and treated early! Opt for minimal access removal!!
Dr. Meenakshi Sundaram
MD, DNB (Obstetrics& Gynecology)
Diploma in Advanced laparoscopy (Beams, Mumbai)
Diploma in advanced endoscopy (Kiel, Germany)