Uterine Fibroids Awareness Week: understanding the importance of early detection and its impact on women’s health

Uterine fibroids are common among women of reproductive age. Picture: cottonbro studio/Pexels

Uterine fibroids are common among women of reproductive age. Picture: cottonbro studio/Pexels

Published Apr 15, 2024


From April 18 to 24, communities come together to mark Fibroid Awareness Week, a significant time dedicated to supporting women battling fibroids.

This annual event aims to shine a spotlight on a common yet under-discussed health issue that impacts between 20% to 80% of women at some point in their lives.

Kiko Vitals, a company at the forefront of holistic wellness solutions, is taking a major step this April to focus on Uterine Fibroid Awareness Month.

Their mission? To equip women with the knowledge they need to identify, diagnose, and tackle uterine fibroids head-on.

Uterine fibroids, also known as leiomyomas or myomas, are non-cancerous lumps that form in the muscle layers of the uterus. They are most frequently found in women of childbearing age. However, the condition often flies under the radar due to the absence of noticeable symptoms in many cases.

Understanding uterine fibroids

Uterine fibroids can vary in size, ranging from tiny to as large as a grapefruit. These growths are common among women of reproductive age and can occur in different parts of the uterus, leading to various symptoms and complications.

Prevalence and risk factors

There's a hereditary component to fibroids. Women who have a family history of fibroids are more likely to develop them.

Hormonal imbalances

Fibroids are more common in women in their 30s and 40s, and the risk decreases after menopause due to a decrease in hormone production.

Being overweight increases the risk of fibroids.

Consuming a diet high in red meat and low in green vegetables, fruit, and dairy may increase the risk of fibroids.

High stress, lack of exercise, and high alcohol consumption may also contribute to the risk of developing fibroids.

Early onset of menstruation is another risk factor for the development of fibroids.

Common symptoms and complications

Women who have uterine fibroids might feel different symptoms such as heavy periods, pain or pressure in the lower stomach, needing to pee a lot, constipation and bloatedness.

For those seeking treatment, the starting point might be as simple as changes in diet and lifestyle. Picture: Moe Magners/Pexels

These symptoms can cause other problems like anaemia from losing too much blood, trouble getting pregnant, and complications during pregnancy, including miscarriage, early birth or a baby not growing as it should.

When it comes to finding out if someone has uterine fibroids, doctors usually do a couple of things. They start with checking the patient by hand during a pelvic exam to see if there's anything unusual.

They also use ultrasound tests, which can be done from outside the belly or inside the vagina, to get clear images of the fibroids, showing how big they are, where they are, and how many there are.

Sometimes, doctors might ask for other tests like hysterosalpingography, hysteroscopy, or laparoscopy to get a better look and make a more accurate diagnosis, explained Kerri-Lee Taylor, the founder of Kiko Vitals.

Taylor commented: “Our goal is to arm women with the knowledge they need to take control of their reproductive health. By raising awareness and providing comprehensive information, we aim to empower women to make informed decisions and seek appropriate care.”

Taylor said: “Understanding, diagnosing, and managing uterine fibroids is vital for overall health and well-being. By staying informed about symptoms, risk factors, and available management options, women can make informed decisions regarding their reproductive health. “

She added: “Uterine Fibroid Awareness Week is crucial because it helps to highlight the prevalence and impact of fibroids, which affect a significant portion of women, particularly those of African descent.

“One of the biggest misconceptions about uterine fibroids is that they always require surgical treatment.”

“Many women carrying fibroids might not even realise they have them, as they don't always cause noticeable problems. For those seeking treatment, the starting point might be as simple as changes in diet and lifestyle.”

Embracing a philosophy that prioritises food and lifestyle adjustments can lead to significant improvements.

“Reducing body inflammation through a healthy diet, supplements, managing stress, and regular exercise can naturally decrease the size of fibroids,” Taylor encouraged.

This product's unique formula brings together Slippery Elm, Peppermint, and Lemon Balm, all celebrated for their digestive benefits and their knack for easing bloating. Picture: Supplied

Among their offerings, their Hormone Balance stands out. This product combines Chasteberry and Dong Quai, traditional ingredients celebrated for their ability to foster hormonal balance.

Since hormonal imbalances, especially in estrogen and progesterone levels, play a pivotal role in the formation and growth of uterine fibroids, achieving a more balanced hormonal state could ease symptoms associated with fibroids.

Taylor highlights another standout product, Debloat + Gut Glow, specially designed to tackle the digestive issues often linked with uterine fibroids.

This product's unique formula brings together slippery elm, peppermint and lemon balm, all celebrated for their digestive benefits and their knack for easing bloating.

Dandelion root is added to the mix for its liver-cleansing abilities, while papaya enzyme improves digestion and nutrient uptake.

A dash of ginger root enhances the blend with its anti-inflammatory powers, making digestion smoother and reducing bloating.