Too Many Women Showing Up In E.R Because Of Fibroids

Nikki Attkisson | Last Updated : June 10, 2021

According to recent 12-year research, just too many women are visiting emergency departments in the United States due to fibroids.

Too Many Women Showing Up In E.R Because Of Fibroids

Fibroids are frequent noncancerous uterine growths. They don’t usually create symptoms, but when they do, they can cause excessive menstrual flow and severe stomach pain.

Too Many Women Showing Up In E.R Because Of Fibroids

Tens of thousands of women are treated in the emergency room for fibroids each year in the United States, yet only one in ten is admitted to the hospital. This shows that if women had access to treatment, many of these cases may have been effectively treated elsewhere.

As per research author Dr. Erica Marsh, if a person has symptomatic fibroids, they must establish care with a women’s health physician so they may be advised on all the choices for treatment and symptom alleviation in a comfortable atmosphere. She is the chief of the reproductive endocrinology and infertility division at Michigan Medicine Von Voigtlander Women’s Hospital, Ann Arbor’s Center for Reproductive Medicine.

Marsh said that the E.R. may be avoided by not delaying treatment for symptoms, even in the middle of a pandemic, and by collaborating with the health care provider on short-term and long-term interventions as needed.

Fibroids can be cured with drugs, surgery, and/or interventional radiology treatments such as uterine artery embolization to cut off the fibroid’s blood supply, she added.

The researchers used a countrywide database to examine more than 487 million emergency visits by women aged 18 to 55 in the United States between 2006 and 2017. During the research period, the number of E.R. visits for fibroids more than doubled, rising from more than 28,700 to almost 65,700. At the same time, hospital admissions for these visits reduced from around 24% to 11%, according to the research.

The study doesn’t explain why more women are coming to the E.R. for fibroids treatment, but it might be because they don’t have a primary care doctor or health insurance, and many may put off seeking care until the symptoms become unbearable.

Women aged 36-45 and those with lower incomes were the most likely to attend an emergency room for fibroids. Women who went to the E.R. for bleeding problems were 15 times more likely to be hospitalized. The study found that women without insurance who went to the emergency department with fibroid symptoms were less likely to be admitted to the hospital.

According to Marsh, there will be moments when obtaining emergency treatment is vital. However, she claims that the great majority of women who report to the E.R. with fibroids as their primary diagnosis are released home.

Marsh believes that greater infrastructure for women’s health in general, and urgent women’s health care in particular, is required. When patients do not receive prompt care, they frequently require more expensive and intrusive therapy and have fewer treatment alternatives.

Fibroid treatment can be twice as expensive as other emergency department visits among similar-aged women, owing to the high cost of imaging scans and other testing required diagnosing bleeding.

The average emergency department visit bill for fibroids more than quadrupled throughout the research period, costing more than $6,000 per visit and totaling $500 million in 2017.

According to Dr. Jennifer Wu, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, getting frequent gynecologic checks can likely help identify fibroids before they become an emergency. Knowledge is power, and if a person is aware that they have fibroids, they may better notice signs, such as pain before their period, and take actions to treat them.

According to Wu, who was not involved in the study, there are situations when a fibroid and its symptoms represent an emergency. If a woman is bleeding so excessively that she feels weak and/or becomes anemic, she may require a blood transfusion and should seek medical attention right once.

She stated that there are more medicines available than ever before to address the symptoms of fibroids. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as NSAIDs, can be used, and birth control tablets can help manage excessive bleeding and uncomfortable periods.

Surgeries may include the removal of the fibroids (myomectomy), and a hysterectomy may be required if previous therapies have failed or if the fibroids are exceedingly big, according to Wu.

Nikki Attkisson

With over 15 years as a practicing journalist, Nikki Attkisson found herself at Powdersville Post now after working at several other publications. She is an award-winning journalist with an entrepreneurial spirit and worked as a journalist covering technology, innovation, environmental issues, politics, health etc. Nikki Attkisson has also worked on product development, content strategy, and editorial management for numerous media companies. She began her career at local news stations and worked as a reporter in national newspapers.

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