Anemia and Fibroids: How are They Connected?
Fibroids are the most common complex GYN condition in women, often occurring during childbearing years. OBGYNs frequently leave fibroids untreated, recommending women to “watch and wait” before making a decision. However, even though some fibroids do not present any symptoms, others can cause significant health problems and complications, including anemia.
What are Fibroids?
Fibroids are benign tumors that grow in or around the uterus. They are made of smooth muscle and connective tissue and can affect up to 80% of women by the time they reach 50. There are several types of fibroids, and they can vary considerably in size. Some fibroids are so small that they cannot be seen with the naked eye, while others grow to be very large and may even cause the uterus to enlarge. Symptoms may include:
- Frequent urination
- Severe pain during a period
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Pelvic pressure
- Stomach swelling
- Constipation and diarrhea
- Pain with intercourse
- Vaginal discharge
What Causes Fibroids?
The cause of fibroids is not completely understood, but there are several potential causes and risk factors:
- Hormones: fibroids require estrogen to grow
- Genetics: some women are genetically predisposed to this condition
- Age: risk of fibroids increases with age
- Ethnicity: African American patients are at a greater risk
- Obesity: higher fat levels increase the production of estrogen
What is Anemia?
Anemia is a condition that occurs when you have low levels of red blood cells or hemoglobin in your blood. Hemoglobin is the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. There are many types of anemia, including:
- Iron-deficiency anemia
- Pernicious anemia
- Aplastic anemia
- Hemolytic anemia
- Vitamin deficiency anemia
The most common type is iron-deficiency anemia, which occurs when your body does not have enough iron. When your body does not have enough iron, it cannot produce adequate hemoglobin levels. If you’re experiencing anemia, you may have the following symptoms:
- Chest pain
- Fatigue and weakness
- Pale or yellowish skin
- Irregular heartbeat
- Cold hands and feet
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Weak and rapid pulse
- Shortness of breath
What Causes Anemia?
Anemia is caused by a lack of red blood cells in your body, which may occur due to excessive bleeding, inadequate production of red blood cells, or your body destroying your red blood cells. Your red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body and bringing carbon dioxide to your lungs to expel, playing a crucial role in one of your body’s basic functions.
The Connection Between Anemia and Fibroids
Anemia is typically the presentation of an underlying disease, and in many cases, fibroids are the underlying cause. This condition can lead to anemia due to the heavy bleeding often associated with untreated fibroids. Anemia can rapidly turn into a life-threatening situation, which is why the Center for Innovative GYN Care (CIGC) urges women to get their fibroids treated.
LAAM for Fibroid Treatment
The LAAM procedure, or Laparoscopically Assisted Abdominal Myomectomy, is a minimally invasive surgery used to remove uterine fibroids of almost any size. Ideal for women who want to preserve fertility, this surgery can remove up to 160 fibroids in one patient and fibroids larger than 20 cm. The LAAM also offers smaller incisions, faster recovery time, less pain, and fewer complications than standard laparoscopic procedures.
CIGC founders developed and perfected this minimally invasive technique to help women get the fibroid treatment they deserve.
Tired of Dealing with Fibroids? Experience the CIGC Difference
Don’t watch and wait for your fibroids and allow them to progress into more severe health complications, such as anemia. Getting fibroid treatment is crucial to maintaining your overall health and preserving your fertility. If you or a loved one are suffering from anemia as a result of fibroids, schedule a consultation with CIGC to learn more about our comprehensive treatment options and revolutionary surgical techniques.
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