For many women, endometriosis and fibroids are a difficult part of every day life. These conditions can be intensely draining emotionally, and depleting biochemically. Additionally, common western treatments such as pain medication, hormonal regulation, and surgical options are invasive and may not help a woman to address her symptoms and reach her fertility goals in a safe and healthy way. If fertility is the primary goal, or if a woman is curious how to address theses imbalances holistically, Chinese medicine understands endometriosis and fibroids as not only having a group of common symptoms but as having similar underlying patterns which can be adjusted through the use of herbs, acupuncture and dietary changes.
Chinese medicine can minimize the pain precursors in the body called prostaglandins, smooth the flow of blood in the uterus, reduce the size of foreign growth patterns, and regulate the menses and ovulation for healthy conception.
Enodmetriosis is the growth of endometrial tissue outside of the uterus. What we know about this condition is that it is estrogen dependent, and that the painful cramping it incurs is due to a high levels of prostaglandins in the body. Instead of shedding the lining of the uterus or ‘endometrium’ monthly, women with this condition will have endometrial cells that move to the rectum, bladder, cervix, fallopian tubes, pelvis and other areas of the body and replicate. This replication of cells creates a foreign growth, which the immune system then tries to expel. This immune response thus leads to inflammation which stagnates the flow of blood in the uterus, causing blockages and pain. Symptoms can vary from mild to severe, and most often include painful periods, heavy bleeding, back pain, painful intercourse, and infertility. In order to properly diagnose endometriosis, a laparoscopy must be done to examine the tissue. Half of women who have difficulty conceiving may have endometriosis found laparoscopically.
Uterine fibroids are also causes of painful periods, heavy bleeding, and infertility. Also known as, ‘myomas’ or benign tumors, fibroids are present in 20% of women over 35 years of age. Fibroids are diagnosed through pelvic examination and ultra sound technology, and can inhibit conception if they block the fallopian tube or uterine cavity. Similar to endometriosis, the body recognizes uterine fibroids as foreign growth and the immune system sets up a plan of attack which confuses the bodies normal neuro-endocrine cycle, thus shifting the menses and ease at which blood flows through the uterus.
Chinese medicine characterizes both endometriosis and fibroids as blood which is not flowing properly and thus will cause problems. The maligned blood in fibroids or endometrial lesions also inhibits new, clean, oxygenated blood to arrive at the site. This causes an inflammatory reaction which then sets the immune system in motion, preparing a way to fight the foreign growth.
With acupuncture, we can smooth the flow of stagnant energy, fluid and blood throughout the body. The insertion of fine needles along the pathways called meridians, sends a signal, similar to electricity which helps to properly align water, fluid, blood molecules that have gotten stuck due to the fibroid or endometriosis disorder.
Additionally with with the use of Chinese herbal formulas we can address the bio-chemical imbalance to adjust the root cause of the endometriosis or fibroids, as well working to alleviate the symptoms.
At Universal Family Wellness Clinic we treat many women with these concerns. Using acupuncture, herbs, dietary changes, massage, and other tools we minimize painful periods, smoothing and regulating flow, and helping to address hormonal imbalances and immune function. Please contact us with any questions or to set up your appointment.