Uterine Fibroids

Uterine Fibroids

Often discovered during regular gynecological checkups, most uterine fibroids cause no symptoms.   Yet, some women have noticeable symptoms that warrant medical attention.

Uterine fibroids are growths in the uterus that can result in pain and discomfort. These fibroids are muscle and connective tissue. They may range in size from being microscopic to being larger than a grapefruit. Although most uterine fibroids are almost always noncancerous. They still may need to surgery to treat symptoms.

Several symptoms may occur with uterine fibroids. Especially if they are of significant size. Symptoms might be constipation, pelvic pain, painful intercourse, fertility and urination problems. These symptoms occur by a large fibroid(s) compressing nearby structures. Heavy menstrual bleeding symptoms may be fibroids affecting the way the uterus develops and sheds its lining each month.

What Are Uterine Fibroids

Some fibroids if located on the outside wall of the uterus close to the bladder, can press against it. This causes a loss of bladder volume and requiring more frequent trips to the bathroom. In rare cases, the fibroid prevents them from urinating even when their bladder is full. This can be both uncomfortable and dangerous. If you find that you are unable to sleep through the night, use the toilet more often than normal, or if you are unable to empty your bladder either completely or partially you should get it checked out. Seek immediate medical attention if you are having pain during urination or have trouble urinating.

Some women may experience chronic pelvic pressure or pain. This may happen by the compression of nerves that can exacerbate the pain. Additionally, cause pain in the lower back and sides. While discomfort during intercourse is not limited to only fibroids, it may occur due to fibroids.

Abdominal pain may be a symptom uterine fibroids. Fibroids located in the upper part of the uterus, causing pain and pressure in the abdominal area. Particularly large fibroids can also distend the abdomen, similar to the early stages of pregnancy.

Another common symptom is painful bowel movements and constipation. This is due to fibroids compressing the rectum. The constant pressure can also lead women to feel perpetually bloated.

Women may also experience abnormal bleeding during menstruation. Fibroids often cause irregularities in menstrual bleeding. Heavy bleeding for longer than normal are common fibroid symptom. Prolonged heavy bleeding can cause anemia. Fibroids can also lead to spotting or bleeding between periods.

Although rare, some long-term effects may be fertility issues and miscarriage. The presence of fibroids can sometimes make it more difficult to conceive. Very rarely, they can compress the ureter causing kidney blockage.

Treatment Options

Patients experiencing moderate or severe uterine fibroid symptoms should talk to their doctor. Fibroids can be diagnosed either by pelvic exam or by ultrasound. Women who experience sharp, sudden pelvic pain or severe vaginal bleeding should seek immediate medical attention.

Uterine fibroids are generally benign. Yet, symptoms are often indistinguishable from other disorders of the digestive, urinary or reproductive systems. Testing can help you determine. This is one reason that timely diagnosis is important. Also, when uterine fibroid symptoms begin to impinge upon a patient’s quality of life, it is time to seek medical treatment.

There are several treatment options. One treatment is a minimally-invasive, non-surgical procedure called uterine fibroid embolization (UFE). UFE shrinks fibroids and provides immediate relief. UFE occurs in an outpatient setting. This means no incisions, no general anesthesia and a much shorter recovery time. It provides proven relief. Allowing a woman to save their uterus, which can lead to long-term health benefits. Click here for additional information.

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