More About Uterine Fibroids
As many as 1 in 5 women will have uterine fibroids during their childbearing years. Most of these women wont know it because they might not experience any symptoms. So what are uterine fibroids? Fibroids are noncancerous growths that occur in the uterus during a womans childbearing years. These growths do not mean that a woman has an increased risk of developing uterine cancer. It is also rare that these growths develop in to cancer themselves.
Uterine fibroids can be microscopic in size, or grow up to several inches across and weigh tens of pounds. There are four different types of uterine fibroids:
Myometrial or intramural fibroids- Myometrial fibroids grow in the muscular wall of the uterus.
Submucosal fibroids Submucosal fibroids grow just under the interior surface of the uterus, and may protrude into the uterus.
Subserosal fibroids Subserosal fibroids grow on the outside wall of the uterus.
Pedunculated fibroids Pedunculated fibroids usually grow outside of the uterus. These fibroids are attached to the uterus by a base or stalk.
How can you tell if you might have uterine fibroids? Some of the symptoms include: prolonged menstrual cycles, heavy bleeding during periods, bloating or pressure in the lower abdomen, frequent urination, trouble emptying your bladder, constipations and backache and leg pain.
Fibroids usually affect women over the age of 30. They are fairly rare in women under 20, and often shrink and cause no symptoms for women who have experienced menopause. Uterine fibroids also are more common with African American women than Caucasian women.
There are a variety of treatment options out there for uterine fibroids. Your doctor may prescribe birth control pills to help control heavy bleeding. They might also suggest an intrauterine device or IUD to release progestin. This hormone can also help reduce heavy bleeding and pain. Hormonal therapy might also be used to help shrink fibroids. This therapy is only used for a short time before a woman has surgery or hits menopause.
Surgical treatment options for fibroids include: Myomectomy, Uterine Artery Embolization,
Hysterectomy and the Hysteroscopic resection of the fibroids. Some of these options work well for women who dont want to have children. Others are better options for women who do want to have children someday. Its best that you talk to a doctor to determine which treatment option is right for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Abdominal Myomectomy for Uterine Fibroid Tumors?
I have done my research, so I am really looking for answers based on the personal experience of other women. PLEASE, serious responses only.
Background: I’m 34 and I have uterine fibroid tumors, diagnosed by internal ultrasound. 2 of the 3 are quite large. 1 is pedunculated. I know that small, asymptomatic fibroids are commonly left untreated, but in my case, my doctor recommends removal because of the size and my symptoms. My symptoms include pain, enlarged abdomen, bladder/urinary issues, pain during intercourse and even tampon use, dysfunctional vaginal bleeding (like a period, but for 2+ wks of the month, in addition to my week-long, heavy period), etc. My doctor also recommends surgery because removal will increase my chances (from my current state) of being able to conceive later.
In my case, my doctor determined that the only surgery available to me is abdominal myomectomy. (There are less evasive treatments including medications and laparoscopy, but I do not qualify for them.) This surgery involves a 4-5″ horizontal incision in my abdomen and an incision in the uterine wall once the uterus is lifted out through the incision. If I am later able to conceive, and if I successfully carry a child near term, I will have to have a planned C-section birth a few weeks early due to the weakening of the uterine wall.
I know there are risks as with any surgery (blood loss, anesthesia issues, etc.). The possible complications for this specific surgery include infertilization, unexpected hysterectomy, excessive scar tissue, recurrence of the fibroids, etc. For me, my desire for a normal quality of life and my hope of having children both outweigh the risks.
My questions are:
(1) How long will this surgery take to recover (i.e., when may I walk and sleep without excruciating pain, return to the desk part of my job, exercise – cardio, situps)? My research says it takes 2-6 weeks to return to work, varying from person to person. I am healthy, relatively active, and have a fairly high tolerance of pain. Can anyone similar to me describe the approximate recovery time?
(2) What other personal experience can you share (i.e., post-surgery pregnancy, infertilization, surgery complications, recurrence, pregnancy complications/miscarriage, etc.)?
(3) If you did experience infertilization (not caused by unexpected hysterectomy), is In Vitro still an option?
I am not qualify to answer your question as I do not have personal experience with Fibroids. I recently did a research about fibroids for a friend of mine and found http://www.shrinkfibroids.net website, which is about personal experience. Perhaps you may find useful information.
I have a 6.0mm hypoechoic lesion in the posterior wall of the uterine body. what does that mean?
The lesion is said to correspond to adenomyosis vs. intramural fibroid. I was told I have a pedunculated subserosal fibroidat the uterine fundus measuring 46.2 x 45.0 mm.
It means you have a mass that does not bounce echoes back. If it bounced echoes back that would indicate something fluid filled vs. solid. Yours sounds solid. This rules out something fluid filled like a cyst.
Basically it sounds like you have a mass on the back (posterior) of your uterus and it is most likely a uterine fibroid.
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