Uterine Fibroids: Symptoms, Risk Factors And Treatment Options

Did you know, by the time they reach the age of 50, up to 80% of women have fibroids, according to the Office on Women’s Health? Most women, however, don’t have any symptoms and might never be aware that they have fibroids.

Below, we will be looking at what fibroids are, how you diagnose them, and ways in which you can treat your symptoms. 

What Are Fibroids?

Fibroids are abnormal growths that form in or on the uterus of women. There are occasions when these lesions grow extremely large, causing excruciating stomach pain and irregular periods. Other times, they do not appear to have any effect. Most of the time, the growths are benign or non-cancerous. There is no known cause of fibroids.

The most prevalent kind of fibroids is those that are intramural. These varieties manifest themselves within the uterus’s musculature. The expansion of intramural fibroids may cause your womb to stretch.

Risk Factors For Getting Fibroids?

If a woman has one or more of the listed risk factors, she is more inclined to get fibroids:

  • Falling Pregnant 
  • Fibroids run in your family 
  • 30 years older 
  • Overweight 

The Symptoms Of Fibroids

The number, location, and size of lesions you have will all affect your symptoms. For example, submucosal fibroids can make it difficult to conceive and produce excessive menstrual flow.

You might not experience any symptoms if your lesion is tiny or you are going through menopause.

It is possible for fibroids to decrease whilst you are going through menopause and post-menopause. This is because there is a decrease in estrogen and progesterone levels in the body. These two hormones may create the formation of fibroids, in menopausal women.


Symptoms Of Fibroids

Fibroid symptoms may include:

  • Pain in the pelvis or lower back, excessive bleeding before or during periods that involves blood clots.
  • An increase in period cramps, increased urine, prolonged menstruation, pressure, or feeling of heaviness in your lower abdomen. 
  • Abdominal swelling or enlargement

Ways In Which To Diagnose Fibroids

You must visit a gynecologist to receive a pelvic exam in order to receive an accurate diagnosis. This examination is done to determine your uterus’s health, dimensions, and shape. You might additionally require the following tests:

An Ultrasound

An ultrasound creates images of your uterus on a screen using high-frequency sound waves. Your doctor will be able to see the inside anatomy and any fibroids by doing this. Since the ultrasound wand is placed inside the vagina during a transvaginal ultrasound, it is closer to the uterus and may produce crisper images.

Ultrasound for Uterine Fibroids
Ultrasound Doppler

A Pelvic MRI

A detailed imaging examination called an MRI creates images of your uterus, ovaries, as well as other pelvic organs.

Treatment Options For Fibroids

Your doctor will create a treatment plan based on your age, fibroids’ size, and general health. A variety of therapies might be applied to you. 

Medication

Your doctor might advise hormone-balancing drugs to decrease fibroids.

Leuprolide (Lupron), a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist, lowers your levels of estrogen and progesterone. The fibroids will ultimately diminish, and the menstruation will end.

GnRH antagonists also aid fibroid shrinkage. They function by inhibiting the production of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone by your body (LH).


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