Journal of the Department of Behavioural Sciences
Vol. 2, (1), December 2012
Fibroids: a silent health problem affecting women in Trinidad and Tobago
Innette Cambridge, Patricia Sealy

Uterine fibroids are described as benign tumours of the womb. Conventional medicine states that only 20% of women have fibroids when they reach the age of menopause. This figure is not however representative of the Caribbean community, where the statistics are much higher. In Trinidad and Tobago, women between the ages of 25-44 show the highest incidence of fibroids, which are the most common tumour for women's admission to hospital. This paper examines the experiences of Trinidadian women with fibroids and argues that like HIV/AIDS, hypertension, diabetes or cancer, the occurrence of fibroids among women needs to be promoted as a public health concern.

The paper reviews the incidence and prevalence of fibroids internationally and within Trinidad and Tobago, and surveys current research findings for fibroids. Case studies that demonstrate the effects of fibroids on women and their quality of life illustrate the urgency of this issue. The article concludes by identifying a research agenda to develop preventative interventions for fibroids, and calls for building public awareness among the population of urgent matter involving women's health in Trinidad and Tobago.