Elizabeth (Ebbie) A. Stewart, M.D., studies uterine fibroids, also called uterine leiomyomas or myomas.
Fibroids are noncancerous tumors of the uterus that commonly cause heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain and pressure, bowel and bladder problems, and sometimes infertility and miscarriage. Fibroids are also the leading cause of hysterectomy.
For women of African descent, fibroids develop at an earlier age and are more frequent and severe, making them a significant cause of health disparities.
Dr. Stewart's team does a variety of clinical and translational research, including studying the epidemiology of fibroids, the economics of fibroids and fibroid treatments, and the genetics of fibroids. She and her team also are developing new methods of fibroid diagnosis and treatment.
Fibroids all have some common features with other diseases that affect women's health, including leiomyoma variants, adenomyosis, endometriosis and endometrial polyps. Therefore, studies of these diseases are also included in her work.
Dr. Stewart's research is funded by major grants from the National Institutes of Health; foundations, including the Focused Ultrasound Surgery Foundation; and industry sources.
- Conducting clinical trials of minimally invasive uterine fibroid therapies, including uterine artery embolization, MRI-guided focused ultrasound and myomectomy
- Developing novel diagnostic strategies for uterine disease
- Understanding clinical characteristics predisposing to adenomyosis and leiomyoma variants
- Understanding the genetics of uterine leiomyomas
- Establishing strategies for the prevention of uterine diseases
Significance to patient care
The long-term goal of Dr. Stewart's research is to develop prevention strategies for fibroids.