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What is Uterine Fibroid? Here's an overview of everything you need to know.

An uterine fibroid is a noncancerous tumor that can develop inside or on the uterus. These are made up of the muscles and connective tissue from the wall of the uterus. These are usually noncancerous. Uterus is upside down pear-shaped organ, the normal size of uterus is similar to lemon. It's where a baby grows and develops. The risk of uterine cancer does not increase with uterine fibroid, and they almost never develop into it. Small fibroid often doesn’t need treatments, but larger fibroid can be treated with medication or surgery.


Women can have a single or multiple fibroid. In extreme cases, multiple fibroid can expand the uterus so that it reaches the rib cage and add weight. Many women have uterine fibroid during their lives. But they might not know of having uterine fibroid because they often cause no symptoms. It may discovered by incidentally during a pelvic exam or prenatal ultrasound.


What are the symptoms of uterine fibroid?

Symptoms can be occur based on fibroid location, size, and number, such as:



  • Heavy vaginal bleeding

  • Menstrual periods lasting more than a week

  • Frequent urination

  • Difficulty emptying the bladder

  • Pelvic discomfort

  • Pelvic pain

  • Bladder problems

  • Low back pain

  • Rectal pressure

  • Discomfort or pain with sexual intercourse


Classification of Uterine Fibroid

Fibroids are generally classified by their location. Uterine fibroid can be classified into three major types. Intramural fibroid develop within the uterine muscle wall. A sub mucosal fibrous mass bulges into the uterine cavity. Sub serosal fibroids appear on the outside of the uterus. It is possible for some sub mucosal or sub serosal fibroids to be pedunculated, hanging from a stalk inside or outside the uterus.


Uterine fibroids are common. In women over 35, 40% to 60% will have developed these growths, which can increase abdominal bulkiness or cause painful menstruation.


See your doctor if you have:
  • Pelvic pain doesn't go away

  • Overly heavy, prolonged or painful periods

  • Spotting or bleeding between periods

  • Difficulty emptying your bladder

  • Unexplained low red blood cell count (anemia)

Seek medical care if you have severe vaginal bleeding or sudden sharp pelvic

pain.



Risks for pregnant women with fibroids

Few women have uterine fibroids during pregnancy. If you are pregnant and have fibroids, they probably won't harm you or your unborn child. The majority of women diagnosed with fibroids have normal pregnancies, but they can occasionally cause difficulties.


The majority of fibroids do not develop during pregnancy; however, if they do, it will most likely occur during the first three months (first trimester). This is because fibroids grow with estrogen. When a woman is pregnant, her body makes more of it.


Preparing for potential complications during labor and delivery can be made easier with knowledge of the location and size of fibroids. risk during pregnant such as:

  • Postpartum hemorrhage,

  • Incomplete cervical dilation, and

  • Weak contracting

Although it is uncommon to recommend a fibroid removal procedure during pregnancy, there are numerous options for shrinking or removing fibroids after birth.


In order to avoid the dangers of a C-section, it is generally preferable to deliver via vaginal delivery. Throughout the pregnancy, your doctor will discuss any personal risk factors you may have. A planned C-section may be recommended by the doctor in some instances.


After giving birth, fibroids frequently shrink. One study found that 70% of women who had live births saw their fibroids shrink by more than 50% three to six months later.


Treatments for fibroids?

The majority of women who have uterine fibroids either do not experience any symptoms at all or only experience mildly irritating symptoms that they can live with. Waiting patiently could be your best option if that's the case for you.


Treatment for fibroids can go from no treatment by any means to a medical procedure. Treatment is rarely required unless fibroids are causing excessive bleeding, discomfort, or bladder issues.


  • Medications for uterine fibroids target hormones that regulate your menstrual cycle, treating symptoms such as heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pressure. They don't eliminate fibroids, but may shrink them. Contraceptive pills and progestational agents, GnRH agonists (Lupron)

  • Noninvasive procedure (MRI-guided focused ultrasound surgery)

  • Minimally invasive procedures (Uterine artery embolization, Radio frequency ablation)

  • Traditional surgical procedures ( Myomectomy, Hysterectomy)

  • Uterine artery embolization

Hysterectomy and endometrial removal will not permit you to have a future pregnancy. Also, if you want to get the most out of your fertility in the future, uterine artery embolization and radio frequency ablation might not be the best options.


If you want to keep your ability to get pregnant, you should talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of these procedures. If you are actively trying to conceive, a comprehensive fertility evaluation is advised prior to selecting a treatment strategy for fibroids.

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