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Myomas and their uterus-sparing treatment

Dr. med. Dimitrios Chronas

Dr. med. Dimitrios Chronas

December 21, 2022

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4 min

Find out more about fibroids and the innovative Sonata treatment in the interview with Dr Dimitrios Chronas, Head of Gynaecological Oncology.

What are fibroids?

A fibroid is a muscular lump and is the most common benign and hormone-dependent lump in the uterus. This muscle lump is caused by a muscle cell that grows under the influence of female sex hormones.

How often do fibroids occur in women?

This is highly dependent on the woman's age. Between the ages of 40 and 50, fibroids occur in up to 70 per cent of cases. However, it is important to note that fibroids only cause symptoms in around 25 per cent of cases.

What are the symptoms of fibroids?

Most fibroids do not cause any symptoms and therefore do not need to be treated. If fibroids do cause symptoms, these depend heavily on the location and size of the fibroids. Symptoms include heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding, pain in the lower abdomen, pressure or pain during sexual intercourse. In some cases, involuntary childlessness, miscarriages and pregnancy complications can also occur.

How can fibroids be treated?

A distinction is made between treatment with medication and surgery. In the case of treatment with medication, either the symptoms are reduced by taking painkillers or hormone preparations, or the fibroid is shrunk by taking medication.

If treatment involves surgery, the symptoms can be treated by sclerosing the lining of the uterus. Myoma shrinkage can be achieved by uterine vascular occlusion or sclerotherapy of the fibroids. However, fibroids can also be completely removed by surgery.

The appropriate treatment depends heavily on the size and localisation of the fibroids and the patient's current life situation.

What is the Sonata procedure?

The Sonata procedure is a very gentle and safe method of treating fibroids that does not require any incisions or stitches. The uterus is preserved. The fibroid is first localised using ultrasound. Radio frequency waves are then delivered to the fibroid. This causes the fibroid to shrink over the following months. After three months, the symptoms improve or disappear completely in 90 per cent of patients.

When is Sonata treatment not advisable?

Sonata treatment cannot be performed if there is a suspicion of a malignant disease of the uterus, inflammation in the pelvis, pregnancy and implants in the pelvis or hip. Allergies to certain materials can also rule out treatment.

Is Sonata treatment a safe fibroid therapy if I still want to have children?

Sonata treatment preserves the uterus and its function. However, as it is a relatively new procedure, the safety and effectiveness of Sonata treatment in subsequent pregnancies has not been proven. In just over 40 pregnancies to date, there have been no abnormalities in relation to Sonata treatment.

Surgeons in the operating theatre with medical equipment and protective clothing.
Portrait photo of Dr Dimitrios Chronas

Dr. med. Dimitrios Chronas

Chief Physician, Department of Gynaecological Oncology, Women's Clinic

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