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How long does it take for fibroids to shrink?

Dr Eisen Liang - Friday, August 31, 2018

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How long does it take for fibroids to shrink?

It takes about 3 months to shrink 30% and 6 months to shrink 60%. However, symptoms of heavy menstrual bleeding (HMB) are usually relieved within the first 2-3 months of UFE treatment. 

Oral pill that shrinks fibroids linked to serious liver injury

Dr Eisen Liang - Monday, August 20, 2018


Oral pill that shrinks fibroids linked to serious liver injury

What’s the next best non-surgical option?  


For women suffering from fibroids (non-cancerous tumors), every day could be a physical and emotional agony. And many of these women don’t want to go under the knife just to take out their fibroids or lose their uterus for a lot of reasons. This is why nonsurgical approaches to treating fibroids make it a reasonable alternative for women.


Among the few nonsurgical options available, taking oral medication to shrink fibroids could just be the easiest and most convenient treatment there is. Recently, a new fibroid-shrinking drug called ulipristal acetate under the brand name Esmya® has been made available to patients with a promising efficacy to remove the need for future surgical fibroid treatment. However, Esmya was removed from the market following safety concerns regarding liver toxicity requiring transplantation.


Regulators from the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) are currently reviewing the benefits and risks of Esmya usage and have advised patients and healthcare providers to follow specific temporary safety measures to minimize potential risks to patients.


In the meantime, the EMA has recommended healthcare professionals to refrain from using Esmya to treat new patients and those who have already finished previous treatments with the said pill.


As for women who are currently taking Esmya for uterine fibroids, they are advised to monitor their liver function at least once a month during treatment. If they ever experience symptoms related to liver problems like nausea, vomiting, yellowing skin/eyes, anorexia, weakness, and/or upper abdominal pain, they must stop treatment and seek medical help right away. Liver tests are also highly advised to be repeated 2-4 weeks after stopping treatment.


With this impending health and safety risk and concern, what could be the best treatment for fibroids? In the past, the only possible options involved major surgeries such as removal of fibroids (myomectomy) and removal of the whole uterus (hysterectomy). These treatments require general anaesthetics, longer hospital stay and recovery period, and a higher risk of complications compared with today’s available non-surgical treatments.


One non-surgical treatment option is uterine fibroid embolization (UFE), which shrinks fibroids by placing tiny “plastic” particles into the artery that feeds the fibroids. This blocks the blood supply of fibroids, leading them to shrink. The procedure is relatively simple and minimally invasive, performed under local anesthetic, requiring 1-night stay in the hospital and 1-week recovery.


Want to learn more about fibroids and UFE? Visit our website at fibroid.com.au for more information.


 


How much will my fibroids shrink?

Dr Eisen Liang - Wednesday, August 15, 2018


How much will my fibroids shrink?


Everyone is different and every fibroid is different. A "juicy" fibroid that is higher in cellular content than fibrous content, and richer in blood supply is likely to shrink more than a “dry” fibroid that is largely fibrous and poor in blood supply. MRI can help to predict the outcome.

On average, after UFE, each fibroid shrinks 60% of its original volume, to about 40% residual. The total uterine volume shrinks about to 50% of its original volume.

Fibroids don’t have to completely disappear in order for women to achieve significant symptom relief.