Dr Pam Schreiner, of the Division of Epidemiology & Community Health, University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, who was not involved in the study, noted that "fibroids that are found late/larger are commonly dealt with by hysterectomy.
African American women, on average, have higher BMI's and this may delay detection of fibroids until they are larger.
How the study was done
We have found that even among women with small subclinical fibroids (detected incidentally because of a transvaginal ultrasound exam to study polycystic ovaries), African American women had a higher odds of future hysterectomy relative to white women."
She also noted that this study is cross-sectional, "which means that causality can't be inferred, although arguably genetics precede most conditions."
Dr Seldin added that the indications for hysterectomy in study participants were unknown. "We have no information as to whether the surgeries were appropriate (clinically indicated) or not," he said.
Findings in the study
It's also worth noting that the highest proportion (40%) of the hysterectomies performed in study participants were performed during the 1970s. Thus, the results predominantly reflect treatment decisions for this decade.
(Reuters Health, January 2013)
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