My first introduction to fibroids was when my mother at the age of thirty-five had to have surgery. The surgery was a hysterectomy. A hysterectomy is a surgery to remove a woman’s uterus or womb. The uterus is the place where the baby grows when a woman becomes pregnant. After a hysterectomy, a woman is no longer able to have a menstrual cycle or can become pregnant. In some cases, the surgery also includes the removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes.
I was 16 years old, and I had no idea why my mother was in the hospital and what she was surgically getting removed from her body at the time. She had the surgery due to heavy bleeding and was not aware of other alternatives. I also remembered how much she complained about the complications of the surgery which seemed to have on set symptoms of early menopause and hot flashes.
Fast forward to my early twenties while working in a law firm surrounded by other women, the conversation of fibroids had become a bit more frequent among the women in the office. In the discussion the women conveyed how they or their mothers were instructed to have a hysterectomy as the only and best option for them. It was in that same office a few years a later a fellow co-worker had to have an operation to get, you guessed it, her fibroids removed. But what stood out to me about her story, is that she shared after coming back to work, was that she chose to get a myomectomy. A myomectomy is an alternative surgery, which removes the fibroids and leaves the uterus intact. As a newly married women, she chose to have a myomectomy versus a hysterectomy, due to the fact that she still wanted to be able to have children.
Another encounter I had on the topic of fibroids was in my mid-twenties while in college, pursuing a degree in Women Studies. The professor at the time, stated as it relates to male doctors treating women with fibroids, that many of the hysterectomies performed on women were unnecessary. And that she believed that many of the surgeries operated by doctors were financially driven. For some reason I believed her and still do.
I never knew that one day I would be sharing not just my story but my very own personal experience with dealing with fibroids. Stay tune for more on the subject on my journey of healing with fibroids.