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Are there any non-surgical treatment options for fibroids? [Dr. Abadir]

Q: Are there any non-surgical treatment options for fibroids?

A: Unfortunately, there are no simple non-surgical treatments for fibroids. No modifications of diet or other activities have been shown to be tremendously successful. There has been some association with a large meat intake of causing or exacerbating uterine fibroids, but otherwise, the fibroids are fairly on auto-pilot and they respond merely to the presence of estrogen. In terms of non-surgical treatments of fibroids, therefore, one thing to do is to block their ability to access estrogen.

One of the treatments is called GnRH agonists. This treatment stops the production of a hormone and leads eventually to the formation of estrogen. Fibroids essentially regress, as if you went into menopause. Unfortunately, the treatment is somewhat expensive, and it does cause the same symptoms as menopause in terms of hot flashes and other symptoms. Also, it should not be carried on for too much more than six months. Just as early menopause causes issues, this also causes issues over time with a potential increase in the risk of osteoporosis, as well as cardiovascular disease. There are some newer treatments on the horizon that seem to attack the response of the fibroids to progesterone, but they at this point are still experimental and not common to clinical practice.

More videos from the interview with Dr. Abadir of the Fishkill Endovascular Center as he outlines causes and treatments for uterine fibroids:

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