Hope for Women Suffering Heavy Painful Periods

May 27, 2021

Up to one in ten Australian women might be suffering from a little-known condition called Adenomyosis, which can cause debilitating heavy and painful periods affecting women’s quality of life.

New research from Sydney Adventist Hospital has shown that a non-surgical procedure called UAE (uterine artery embolisation) is effective in 90% of women treated. Most women remained symptom free during long term follow-up and 93% of them were able to avoid a hysterectomy.

“Many women suffering from heavy menstrual bleeding and period pain did not know that adenomyosis was the underlying cause of their symptoms as there is a lack of awareness of this disease amongst healthcare professionals as well.” said Dr Eisen Liang from the Sydney Fibroid Clinic.

“In adenomyosis, the inner lining of the uterus has gone into the muscle wall of the uterus and is often referred to as the bad cousin of endometriosis. The two conditions overlap in 80 to 90% of patients, ” said Dr Liang.

“Adenomyosis can also cause premenstrual bloating, chronic pelvic pain, pain during intercourse, as well as fertility and pregnancy issues.”

“Mothers were missing out on family activities; career women were avoiding going into meetings and travelling to work, because they didn’t want to get themselves into an embarrassing situation or they were just curled up in pain.”

“In the past, failing conservative treatments, many women were facing the difficult choice between putting up with symptoms or having a hysterectomy.”

“Now we have shown that UAE is a highly effective non-surgical option and women should come forward for diagnosis and treatment, without the fear of having a hysterectomy. “

“UAE is a local anaesthetic procedure requiring only one night stay in hospital and 1 week recovery.”

“It is performed by an interventional radiologist who uses X-ray guidance to thread a small tube to find the uterine artery. Small particles are injected to shut down blood supply to kill off the diseased tissue. Normal uterine tissue is able to recruit a rich network of dormant collateral arteries and therefore is not harmed.”

Watch this 30s video about adenomyosis and UAE:

*Medical research on UAE and its long term outcomes has just been published in the Australian and New Zealand journal Obstetrics & Gynaecology. https://obgyn.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ajo.13304

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