I am cured! Not so fast… An example of why you want to keep your uterus.

I was researching a condition that a patient of mine has and I stumbled across this:

“The cause of adenomyosis remains unknown, but the disease typically disappears after menopause. For women who experience severe discomfort from adenomyosis, certain treatments can help, but hysterectomy is the only cure.”

I think this is pretty interesting. Let me clarify a few terms for you in the above paragraph.

  • Adenomyosis– when the lining of the uterus grows into the surrounding muscles of the uterues. This creates pain and heavy bleeding for women.
  • Hysterectomy– the removal of the uterus (and usually cervix and ovaries as well) from the body.

Adenomyosis is a great opportunity to understand the adaptation the body will create in an effort to sustain function as it manages burden (toxicity and stress). In a woman, her uterus acts as a organ of elimination. Once a month (during childbearing years), a woman sustains menstruation that helps her eliminate toxicity from her body. This is a very, very good thing and I highly advise all women to never shut down their menstruation (especially with birth control hormones).

So why would the uterine lining begin increasing within the body? Well it is because the woman needs more capacity for elimination. Does the woman like this? Usually not, because it creates pain and discomfort. Does the body like this? Absolutely, because the body is creating this physiologic reaction in an effort to manage adversity.

So what happens when we “cure” this woman by removing the tissue that has adapted to manage a greater state of adversity. The immediate impact is a perceived benefit of less pain and less discomfort. But this short term gain comes with a long term price. Now that the uterus is removed, the women’s physiology has to manage her levels of adversity in a more inappropriate way. This will drive disease and pathology deeper into the body, creating a greater problem down the road.

So did we cure her? No! We created a suppressive environment and the woman has now lost feedback as it relates to the decisions she makes and the impacts they have on her health.

A better option to address the pain and discomfort associated with adenomyosis is to first remove excessive burden from the woman’s life. This can come in the form of changing nutritional choices as they relate to inflammation, blood glucose, and acidity.  The reduction of estrogen mimickers found in plastics, foods, and body products is another relevant place to start. Also the reduction of medications and hormones that influence uterine tissue. Then there are the emotional associations that influence cortisol and estrogen reactions which act upon the health of the uterus.

In truth, there is a whole therapeutic plan that this patient would need to go through to address the underlying cause of imbalance within her body’s physiology. But only through this exploration of her health can a “cure” be found.

Dr.Buttler

Naturopathic physician who is educating people about their health in order to empower them to practice self care.