Sisters Brenda Lewis and Dorothy King-Curry may have different stories, but they’ve come to the same conclusion: you don’t have to live with fibroid tumors. “I waited too many years,” Brenda says. “My fibroids were leaning against my bladder and my situation just got worse.” When Brenda first saw Briana Walton, MD, urogynecologist at AAMC’s Women’s Center for Pelvic Health, she was having problems with incontinence.
“She came to me with overactive bladder symptoms,” says Dr. Walton who is a specialist in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. “I knew she had fibroids. They were a fairly small size, so we discussed using the robotic assisted surgery along with reconstructive repair at the same time.”
The minimally invasive surgery removed Brenda’s fibroids and cured her incontinence with very little disruption to her life. “Being that I had the robotic surgery, my recovery time was much less than it would have been,” she says. “The next day I was home and I was going up and down the stairs.”
For her sister Dorothy, robotic surgery wasn’t an option. Because of the size of her fibroid tumors, she required a hysterectomy. “Dorothy had very large fibroids and it was nearly impossible for us to utilize any form of minimally invasive surgery,” says Dr. Walton. “She required an abdominal incision in order to deliver this very large fibroid that she had.”
Having the fibroid removed immediately alleviated Dorothy’s pain and discomfort. She says it was the same relief that comes with delivering a baby. “Once the baby is out, you’re fine,” she says. “That’s how I felt. I didn’t have any pain. I think after three weeks, I was up walking around.”
“Don’t wait,” says Brenda. “Fibroids don’t go away on their own.”