Your Health: New procedure could shrink uterine fibroids

More than 25 million American women between the ages of 15-50 have uterine fibroids.
Published: Oct. 11, 2022 at 5:24 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - More than 25 million American women between the ages of 15-50 have uterine fibroids.

They’re non-cancerous growths in the uterus that can cause pain and abnormal bleeding. For some women, a hysterectomy - the surgical removal of the uterus - is the best option.

A new treatment is helping women avoid invasive surgery.

Over the past few months, Tia Johnson’s life and health have taken a good turn. The mom of six is newly married and feeling great after years of struggling with the discomfort and abnormal bleeding from a fibroid.

“It was nine centimeters,” Johnson said. “I was told it was the size of a baby’s head. And it was inside of my uterus, not on the outside.”

Johnson’s doctor suggested a medication that would put her into menopause and decrease the fibroid, or a hysterectomy, which would mean up to eight weeks of recovery.

“I could not imagine having to take off work for any length of time to have that done,” Johnson said.

Dr. Latasha Murphy is an expert in minimally invasive gynecology. She suggested a new procedure called Acessa, where doctors operate laparoscopically through two tiny incisions in the abdomen.

“We can pinpoint exactly where in the uterus we want to treat,” Murphy said. “And that’s the fibroid and limit the treatment just to the fibroid itself.”

When the device heats up, it causes the tissue to soften.

“Actually, during the surgery, you can see the fibroids shrinking right before your eyes,” Murphy said.

Johnson felt the difference almost immediately.

Murphy said the procedure can be repeated to treat any new fibroids that develop.

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