Uterine Fibroid Exam

Why Uterine Fibroids Require Attention

Jan 19, 2024Uterine Fibroid

When it comes to uterine fibroids, awareness needs immediate attention. As benign growths appearing on the uterus, uterine fibroids can result in severe discomfort and may involve serious health implications.

Uterine Fibroids: Why They are Dangerous

Unlike common perception, uterine fibroids are more than just painful discomfort. Although they are non-cancerous, uterine fibroids can grow large and result in severe abdominal pain and heavy periods. They also pose risks during pregnancy and childbirth and can cause complications such as postpartum hemorrhage.

Moreover, fibroids can increase the risk of cesarean (C-section) birth, baby being breech, and preterm birth. While smaller fibroids may not cause noticeable symptoms, they could still grow progressively, sometimes rapidly, causing unexpected health issues.

Here is a look at some commonly asked questions about Uterine Fibroids.

A Closer Look at the Statistics

Uterine fibroids, also known as leiomyomas or myomas, are benign tumors that grow in the uterus. They are among the most common reproductive system tumors in women, often occurring during childbearing years. The statistics surrounding uterine fibroids reveal a lot about their prevalence, risk factors, and impacts on women’s health. By examining these statistics, we gain insight into the importance of awareness, diagnosis, and management of uterine fibroids.

Prevalence and Incidence

Widespread Occurrence: Uterine fibroids affect a significant portion of the female population. Up to 70-80% of women will develop fibroids by the age of 50. However, not all women with fibroids experience symptoms or require treatment.

Early Onset: While fibroids can develop at any time in a woman’s life, they most commonly appear in women in their 30s and 40s.

Disparity in Impact: African American women are more likely to develop fibroids than women of other races. African American women are also prone to having larger and more numerous fibroids at younger ages.

The Size of Fibroids: Fibroids can be as small as a seed you would find in an apple or cucumber, or they can grow to the size of grapefruits.

Risk Factors

Heredity: Women who have a family history of uterine fibroids are more likely to develop them. If a woman’s mother had fibroids, her risk of having them is about three times higher than average.
Obesity: Being overweight is associated with an increased risk of developing fibroids. For very obese women, the risk is two to three times greater than average.

Diet: High consumption of red meat and ham is linked with a higher risk of fibroids. Conversely, a diet high in green vegetables is associated with a lower risk.

The Importance of Awareness and Treatment

Given the significant prevalence and potential impacts of uterine fibroids, awareness, early detection, and appropriate treatment are crucial. Modern treatment options range from medication to non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures, offering effective relief with fewer side effects and shorter recovery times.

Medications may be used to shrink the fibroids and reduce the symptoms. Some medications are aimed at controlling the hormones, and some are designed to reduce blood flow to the fibroids.

Uterine Fibroid embolization (UFE) is a minimally invasive procedure that is gaining in popularity. The procedure involves threading a catheter through the arteries leading to the uterus and inserting particles that block the arteries and the flow of blood. The fibroids shrink, and the woman is able to preserve fertility.

Contact Coastal Vascular Center

Uterine fibroids are a major health concern for women and a significant cause of reproductive health-related complaints. Understanding uterine fibroids underscores the need for continued research, improved treatment options, and broadened awareness efforts to ensure women have access to the care they need.

If you or someone you know is dealing with symptoms that might be related to uterine fibroids, it’s essential to consult healthcare providers. With proper diagnosis and care, most women can manage their condition effectively and lead healthy lives.

At Coastal Vascular Center, our commitment is to provide comprehensive care and support for women affected by uterine fibroids. For more information or to explore your treatment options, please reach out to us.

Health-related information on CoastalVascular.net is for educational purposes only and, therefore not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.