see also cancer of the uterus - Cancer
Condition in which fragments of lining of uterus (endometrium) migrate into fallopian tubes, ovaries, vagina, and even into intestine where, still under influence of oestrogen and progesterone, they engorge with blood every month, irritating and scarring surrounding tissue; condition is most common in childless women between age of 30 and 40, but cause is not known, although selenium deficiency and use of tampons have been suggested.
Symptoms include heavy periods, dragging period pains which tend to get worse towards end of period (see Menstrual Problems), difficult getting pregnant, and perhaps Painful Intercourse, but severe cases are uncommon; in such cases medical doctor may prescribe combined contraceptive pill or a drug which inhibits ovulation and gives body time to reabsorb dispersed fragments of endometrium; fragments can also be removed surgically; hysterectomy may be advised if ovaries are scarred and no more children are wanted. Constitutional homeopathic treatment is recommended; in the meantime, see Menstrual Problems (painful periods) and Painful Intercourse for suitable short-term remedies.
Non-cancerous growths in or on walls of uterus, sometimes on a stalk and varying in size from a pea to a large plum; tend to occur severally rather than singly and may take a few or many years to develop; small fibroids are often symptomless, but large ones can give rise to heavy, prolonged periods (see Menstrual Problems), Painful Intercourse, and Cystitis (because they press on bladder and prevent it emptying properly); they may also prevent conception, cause Miscarriage or pain during pregnancy, or obstruct delivery; if stalk of fibroid becomes twisted, cutting off blood supply, result is severe pain in lower abdomen; appropriate action is to consult your doctor if there is no improvement in 2 hours and give Aconite 30c every 15 minutes for up to 10 doses.
Fibroids are especially common in women aged 35-40, but cause is not known, although it has been speculated that oestrogens in oral contraceptives may encourage condition. Small fibroids seldom require treatment and tend to disappear after age of 45; troublesome fibroids can be removed surgically following a D and C (scraping of uterus) to confirm diagnosis; sometimes Hysterectomy is advised. Homeopathic treatment is constitutional, although in the short term the remedies below should be tried.
Prolapse of the Uterus or Vagina
Occurs when ligaments and muscles which hold uterus and vagina in place become weak or slack with age or as result of childbirth, allowing uterus to bulge into vagina and press on bladder or rectum; this causes a heavy, uncomfortable feeling in lower abdomen generally, backache, Stress Incontinence or difficulty emptying bladder, or straining and discomfort when passing stools.
If prolapse is complete, a large part of the vagina or uterus may actually protrude through vaginal opening, causing soreness or ulceration and encouraging infection. Surgery to tighten pelvic floor may be necessary if exercises do not restore muscle tone; a ring pessary, fitted behind pubic bone, may be advised if person is elderly. If symptoms are not too severe, homeopathic remedies below may be of benefit; if there is no improvement within a week or two, see your homeopath.
Retroversion of the Uterus
In 20 per cent of women uterus lies close to rectum rather than just behind bladder; this is perfectly natural, and has no effect on conception, carrying a baby, or giving birth, but a few women experience backache because of it, especially during periods, or find that deep penetration during intercourse causes pain because penis strikes an ovary (see Painful Intercourse). Uterus can be repositioned temporarily by inserting a device called a ring pessary into the vagina, or permanently by an operation called a ventrosuspension. See Painful Intercourse for suitable homeopathic remedies.
Benign or malignant growths which develop in placental tissue, causing Miscarriage, or in fragments of placenta remaining in uterus after Termination (abortion) or childbirth; symptoms are irregular bleeding and severe Morning Sickness; diagnosis is by ultrasound scan and by checking urine for excessive levels of HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotrophic) hormone.
Benign tumours, also known as hydatidiform moles, are rare, and malignant tumours extremely rare; the former are removed by D and C (scraping placental tissue out of womb), but the latter may require Hysterectomy and chemotherapy. For homeopathic approach to malignancy, see Cancer. The remedies given below are for tumours diagnosed as benign; they offer symptom relief until a D and C can be arranged.
Specific remedies for fibroids to be taken 4 times daily for up to 3 weeks
- Small fibroids, profuse yellow discharge from vagina Calcarea iod. 30c
- Swollen uterus, urge to bear down, watery brown discharge from vagina, painful cramps during periods Fraxinus 30c
- Menstrual flow heavier than usual, body feels icy cold, bleeding between periods Silicea 30c
- Continuous bleeding Thlaspi 30c
- Short scanty periods as menopause approaches, great pain eased by menstrual flow, abdomen very sensitive to tight clothing Lachesis 30c
- Where menstrual blood is bright red Phosphorus 30c
- Uterus feels as if it is being squeezed during periods Kali iod. 30c
- Uterus feels swollen and painful, spasmodic contractions of vagina Aurum mur. 30c
Specific remedies for Prolapse of the uterus or vagina to be taken 4 time daily for up to 14 days
- Dragging sensation in lower abdomen, made worse by doing jobs which involve bending or lifting, scanty periods, pain on intercourse, depression Sepia 6c
- Vagina very hot and dry, pain in lower back, leaden feeling in abdomen and just below ribs, as if abdominal and pelvic contents are about to drop out Belladonna 6c
- Sharp spasms of pain, constant urge to pass urine or stool, irritability Nux 6c
- Sensation of downward pressure in lower abdomen, pain in small of back, nausea, weepiness, heat and periods make symptoms worse Pulsatilla 6c
- Nervousness, irritability pain and tenderness in lower abdomen, bladder affected, urgent desire to pass stool, itchy vulva which feels as if it needs external support, rest alleviates symptoms Lilium 6c
Self-help: To strengthen muscles of pelvic floor, try stopping and starting flow of urine several times each time you urinate; this may be difficult at first, but persevere. These exercises are a vital part of orthodox and homeopathic treatment, and particularly important after childbirth. If you are heavier than you should be, try to lose weight.
Self-help: for retroversion of the uterus Try different love-making positions so that penetration is shallower. Slant-board exercises may also encourage repositioning of uterus within pelvic cavity.
Specific remedies for Trophoblastic tumours to be taken every 4 hours for up to 2 weeks
- Where constitution is strong Pulsatilla 6c
- Where constitution is weak Secale 6c
- Penetrating pain from base of spine to pubic bone, shooting pains in vagina, bleeding, slightest movement makes symptoms worse Sabina 6c
- Where urination is painful Cantharis 6c