Viva Eve Co-Founder and President Nehal Farouky recently spoke with Maria Dorfner of Bold TV about the importance of opening the conversation around women’s health, particularly uterine fibroids.
“Symptoms are ones women get used to dismissing,” remarks Maria. “Who hasn’t heard a female friend say, ‘I feel so bloated?’ Heavy bleeding during periods is also something women live with, without ever knowing fibroids may be the cause.”
As common as the condition is – more than half the U.S. female population will develop it by the age of 50 – knowledge of fibroids and its symptoms continue to elude women.
“Women are kind of almost programmed to think it’s normal,” says Nehal. “It’s normal to have very heavy periods. It’s normal to bleed 15 days out of the month. In reality, it’s not so normal. Every woman is different of course, and every woman’s flow is different, but there does come a point where it’s not so normal and you should check and see what that cause is.”
The most common symptoms of uterine fibroids include:
- Heavy, prolonged or painful periods with or without clotting
- Pelvic pressure; distended and bloated abdomen
- Moderate to severe menstrual cramps
- Irregular monthly bleeding or spotting, bleeding between periods, unpredictable menstrual cycles
- Pain during sex and loss of libido
- Lower back pain and pain in the back of the legs
- Anemia (low blood count) that can lead to a lack of energy and fatigue
- Weak bladder control, frequent urination because of bladder pressure
Fibroid Treatment Options
The stigma connected with fibroids often leads women to go years before seeking a diagnosis or treatment. However, today fibroids have a very different prognosis than years past. While some women still opt to have a hysterectomy to rid their bodies of fibroids, VIVA EVE provides patients with all their options.
“I think what makes us different also is that we do really treat fibroids,” says Nehal. “We don’t say, ‘hey if you come to us there’s one way to do it.’ There are a hundred ways to do it, and we will work with you to figure out what way is best for you, healthiest for you, and what you want.”
Treatment options include a hysterectomy, myomectomy, and uterine fibroid embolization – a minimally invasive procedure that shrinks fibroids without surgical intervention. It’s this procedure that Nehal chose to undergo when she began experiencing symptoms from her fibroids.
“I don’t know what I would’ve done if my only options were surgical,” says Nehal. “I don’t know that I would’ve treated it right away. Many women have told us that they’ve had this for 10 years, and because the only option given to them was surgical, they have held off.”