Some weeks back, a member of our community had inquired about the phenomenon known as the “hot” womb. However, I was hearing it for the first time and most of my research did not come up with any meaningful details of this condition.
However, last week, while I was in the hospital with my mom, who just had a sub-total hysterectomy (in plain language, the ovaries were not removed), I asked her doctor, and for a while, he paused and then he said, he had only handled one such case in his career.
Here was a man who left Government employment as a Consultant Ob/Gyn ,with several medical officers under his authority, and with an expertise for dealing with knotty issues. I was like, perhaps that is why there were not so many materials on the subject matter.
I however asked him to tell me what he knew about the condition and, ultimately, if that patient went on to have a baby. Here’s the story.
According to the doctor, his attention had been called to the condition of the lady in question, when she suffered her second miscarriage, and the major symptom she had reported was that there was unusual heat in her pelvic region, just before the bleeding started, and it was always around the 9-week mark.
He said they had to cary out some investigations to find out if it was her anti-bodies fighting the foetus that led to the heat, and subsequent miscarriage. They asked that she stay away from trying for a baby for a period of six months, so as to give her body time to balance out its hormones and such, back to the state she was in before the she had two back-to-back miscarriages.
In the meantime, she was closely monitored and frequently asked if she experienced the heat, but her answer was always no. She felt very fine and in good health. When her six months was up, she started trying again, and it was on one of her visits to the hospital that she even found out she was pregnant again.
From then on, it was a waiting game to see when she would complain about the hotness of her womb. It was hammered into her, by her doctor, nd by the consultant in charge of her case, that she should come to the hospital immediately she felt any unusual heat.
They did not have to wait for long. Before the week ran out, the doctor said she came in, complaining about an unbearable heat in her lower abdomen, all the way to her back, which was a new one. Unfortunately, she lost that pregnancy too, and they never saw her at the clinic again, after she was discharged.
Most likely, she had gone to seek other treatments for her condition. While this doctor told me the story as though it did it matter, you could see there was some regret at not being able to help her, in his eyes.
So, what was his theory? What would he have done differently? He told me he suspects it was an immunological problem, whose root cause they had not gotten back then. In addition to the tests and scans she had done, he said he would have wanted another opinion, and even some specific tests on her immune system, and maybe dig into the genetics of her maternal line. Well, he never got an opportunity to help, and since then, he has not had the opportunity to treat another patient with such a condition.
Still seeking answers, I asked another doctor, and his immediate answer was that he had a patient on his hands currently, with the same condition, only in her case, she had never had any confirmed pregnancy, but was always feeling some heat in her womb.
It has already been determined that sperm cells cannot survive in her body, due to the temperature of her body on the inside, as even her husband complains of her feeling hot, every time they copulate, and always asks her if she is running a fever. Her answer has always been no.
So, what’s going on? She has an auto-immune condition that predisposes her to feeling hot, from the inside, and sometimes too from the outside, even though she does not sweat all the time.
He has placed her on immunosuppression drugs, and should her condition not improve, then they would have to move onto some other treatments, maybe, even surrogacy, if all else fails.
Sometimes, autoimmune diseases like lupus, type 1 diabetes, Crohn’s disease, Graves’ disease, multiple sclerosis, or rheumatoid arthritis can contribute towards fertility problems and/or conception difficulties for both men and women, or even recurrent miscarriages, as is often the case with natural killer cells and now this ‘hot’ womb syndrome.
Certain medications prescribed for these immune system disorders can also effect fertility in varying degrees, for either men or women – some more substantially than others.
If you have an autoimmune disease and are trying to conceive, please discuss your condition with your personal physician, Ob/Gyn, Urologist, or Specialist well in advance. If you don’t have a diagnosis, but suspect you might have, or there is some one in your family with it, you still need to talk to your doctor about it.
With this information, your doctor can help you plan and prepare, giving you the best possible advise for a successful outcome, thereby reducing the heartache you will go through. This will involve assessing your medication, recognizing specific triggers, improving any particular lifestyle and dietary issue.
For pregnant women especially, regular supervision throughout the pregnancy is very important.
One thing I realized on this ‘hot’ womb syndrome is it is not common, and doctors don’t have enough information about the condition, so, most often, they wing it when it comes to the treatment. One can only hope that more research will be done into the condition, as, whether we like it or not, this condition has meant some women do not become moms.
It seems depressing, but there is always light at the end of the tunnel.
Baby dust to you all.
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