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It was the most terrifying experience of my life. I was bleeding everyday for almost a year.
It all started after my youngest was born nine years ago. My periods were quite heavy after the birth but I didn’t think much of it because it didn’t last more than a week. But, the periods gradually got heavier and heavier over the next few years. What started off being a weekly inconvenience every month, increased to 10 days then to 14 days a month.
I never thought to go see a doctor at the time because I’m not someone who goes to the doctors at the drop of a hat. I was also embarrassed by it all. I thought to myself… this is just a part of life, no one wants to know or hear this stuff.
I put up with heavy and extended periods for over four years. Until it really took a toll on my body.
I was in constant pain, I always had a headache and I was fatigued all the time. It got to a point where I had to get iron infusions and at one stage, even a blood transfusion.
Finally, I went to see my GP who initially told me it was typical of someone who had had three children. The inconvenience got worse. I never planned a family holiday or risked going anywhere where I didn’t have access to a bathroom. Occasionally I would experience “flooding” – which means blood would gush out of me like a river. I couldn’t control it. It was so traumatic.
Mother-of-three, Bashi says her adenomyosis began after the birth of her third child.
And the worst thing is… I couldn’t tell anyone.
I remember going to the bathroom at least every hour when I was at work. I was embarrassed and I couldn’t confide in anyone. By now, I was bleeding every day of the week. It was having a massive impact on my life – even a normal working day turned into a nightmare for me.
It wasn’t until I had to get my fifth iron infusion that I thought to myself, this can’t be my only option. I need to stop doing this to my body and find another alternative. Every doctor I went to recommended a hysterectomy but I didn’t want to go down that path, so I continued my search for an alternative.
After her fifth iron infusion, Bashi began to look for an alternative treatment.
I came across Uterine Artery Embolisation (UAE) is a non-surgical and non-hormonal radiology procedure that is performed under local anaesthetic and light sedation. A small tube is navigated under x-ray to find the uterine arteries then small particles are injected into them to block the blood supply.
The adenomyotic tissue will die due to the lack of oxygen and the normal uterine muscle wall can open up collaterals and therefore isn’t harmed. The UAE procedure provides hope for women and has a 90% success rate.
I underwent the procedure and only needed a week of recovery time. The pain, iron deficiency, fatigue and, most importantly, having periods everyday of my life, were all gone. I haven’t looked back! I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for another alternative other than surgery.
Bashi underwent a Uterine Artery Embolisation (UAE) procedure which has a 90% success rate.
What is adenomyosis?
According to Sydney Fibroid Clinic, adenomyosis is a condition in which the inner lining of the uterus breaks through the muscle wall of the uterus. Though benign, adenomyosis may cause heavy periods, menstrual cramps, abdominal pressure and bloating – creating a negative impact on overall quality of life.
Typical symptoms are heavy menstrual bleeding and period pain.
There are many options available to treat adenomyosis, including medical therapy, Mirena IUD, uterine artery embolisation and hysterectomy.
For more information, visit Sydney Fibroid Clinic.