Gynecology

Menstrual Disorders

  • Amenorrhea

  • Dysmenorrhea
  • PMS (Pre-Menstrual Syndrome)
 

Endometriosis

  

     Endometriosis is most commonly diagnosed in women between thirty and forty years of age, it can begin as early as the teenage years. The condition is classified according to its severity- mild (small, flat patches of endometrial tissue growing outside the uterine lining), moderate (larger, often somewhat raised implants), or severe (inflammation and scarring caused by the unabsorbed blood creates bands of fibrous scar tissue- adhesions- that bind pelvic organs together). Symptoms of endomeriosis includepainful periods (women with endometriosis have higher prostaglandinlevels, one of the causes of menstrual pain), pathological uterine bleeding, and bleeding at sites other than the endometrium (sometimes as distant as the nasal cavity) during menstruation. Other symptoms include back pain or severe abdominal cramping during menstruation, painful intercourse, painful intestinal upset or urination during menstruation, and , of course, inertility. Around 40 percent of women diagnosed with endometriosis report no symptoms other than infertility. Hormonal treatments like birth control pills and testosterone-enhancing or menopause-induing drugs are sometimes prescribed to halt menstruation altoghther, the theory being that when menstruation ceases the misplaced endometrial tissue will “starve” to death.

     In TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), endometriosis is known by its symptoms and is referred to as “menstrual movement pain.” Kidney deficiency is commonly diagnosed in conjunction with Blood Stasis in women with endometriosis.

        Diet Recommendations

  • No Dairy
  • No Wheat
  • Not too much animal products
  • Flaxseed
  • Evening primrose / Fish oil
  • Bioflavonoids- pycnogenol
Source: The Infertility Cure, by Randine Lewis, Ph.D, published in 2004 
 

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome(PCOS) is the name given to the syndrome in which the ovaries are covered with many small cysts, the menstrual cycles are long or irregular and there is acne or excess body hair. There is a strong genetic component in this syndrome: i.e. it is more common in women who have a family historyof PCOS. Blood tests showelevated testosterone and LH levels and vaginal ultrasound will show ovaries swollen with lots of half-matured follicles. The period picture is quite varied, depening on the severity of the hormone disturbance. There may be no ovulations at all (amenorrhoea or erratic anovulatory bleeding) or there may be occasional ovulations (oligomenorrhoea). Some women have mildly polycystic ovaries but do not manifest the full-blown syndrome. They notice no symptoms other than slightly irregular cycles.

Western specialists usually give the oral contraceptive pill to women with PCOS who do not want to fall pregnant. Women with this condition whodo with to fall pregnant are usually prescribed metformin (Diaformin), a drug which normalises the body’s use of insuin and lowers blood sugar levels, helps weight loss and increases ovulation frequency. Clomifene or FSH preparations may be given to induce ovulation, although this treatment is sometimes risky because of the large number of follicles sitting in the ovary awaiting stimulation.

Chinese medicine seeks to redress the entire hormonalmilieu that produces the changes in awoman’s ovaries seen in PCOS.The most common manifestation of PCOS is dampnesss or phlegm.

Symptoms of PCOS

  • Felling tired and sluggishafter a meal
  • fibrocystic breasts
  • cystic or pustular acne
  • urgen, bright, or foul-smelling stools
  • menstrual blood containing stringy tissue or mucus
  • being prone to yeast infections and vagnal itching
  • aches in the joints, especially with movement
  • being overweight
  • a wet, slimy tongue

Most women with PCOS have endocrine abnormalities affected by diet. If you are overweight, you can help treat your PCOS by losing weight. Fat cells store estrogen, and usually there is relatively too much circulting estrogen and LH in women with PCOS.  The Liver metabolizes these hormones, soahealthy functioning liver is also mandatory forproper insulin balance. To keep the liver healthy, include dietary suources of the B Vitamines, like meats and organ meats, leafy green vegetables, adn whole grains.

Diet Recommendations

  • Cut out all forms of refined sugar
  • Cut out all forms of refined carbohydrates, as the body immediately turns them into sugar.
  • Avoid massive consumption of Yam. The high starch and sugar content in yams exacerbates the impaired flucose metabolism and can actually delay or prevent ovulation if you have PCOS
  • Avoid soda, fruit juice, and any drink that rapidly raises the blood sugar level
  • Comsume adequate amounts of protein
  • Increase consumption of  fresh vegetables
  • Eat only complex, whole grains like oatmeal, brown rice, and whole wheat
  • Avoid Dairy
  • Eliminatealcohol and caffeine
  • Increase your dietary fiber intake
  • Get adequate amounts of exercise
Source: The Infertility Cure, by Randine Lewis, Ph.D, published in 2004, Treatment of Infertility with Chinese Medicine, by Jane Lyttleton, published in 2004
 

Menopause

The symptoms associated with menopause- profuse sweating, loss ofbone density, emotional turmoil= are all related to changes in a woman’s hormonal levels. But in TCM, these symptoms are usally treated with remedies that tonify the Kidneys, such as stimulating points on the Kidney meridian. With this treatment may women find relief from night sweats, feel better mentally. In TCM, Kidney is the organ responsible for growth, maturation and aging. Woman experience menopausal symptoms when they have imbalance in the Kidney organ system, especially Yin and Yang imbalance.

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