If you are diagnosed with uterine fibroids, it may be a help to know that they are very common in women of all ages.These are non cancerous tumors arising from the smooth muscle and connective tissue of uterus. It is expected that 70- 80 percent of women will develop fibroid in their lifetime but not everyone will have symptoms the requires a treatment.
The symptoms may vary depending on the size and location of fibroids. For few they may be small and painless but few may have very
severe symptoms such as
Heavy or irregular menstrual bleeding
Painful cramping during menstrual cycle
Fullness in lower abdomen
Low back ache
Pain during intercourse
Difficulty getting pregnant
Problems during pregnancy
They are usually diagnosed with an ultrasonogram but sometimes a magnetic resonance imaging(MRI) is used for more detail such as size, location and number of fibroids.
There are multiple treatment options given by your doctor depending on your symptoms. It may include
Pain relievers (such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen) for mild pain
Non hormonal medications to decrease bleeding such as tranexamic acid
Hormone birth control (such as OC Pills / Mirena) to decrease bleeding during periods
Iron supplements to prevent anaemia.
Some cases may require Gonadotopin releasing hormones -agonists/antagonists to shrink the fibroid before surgery.
Some fibroids require surgery
Myomectomy: A procedure offered for young women who want to become pregnant later where in only the fibroid is removed keeping the uterus intact. The chances of fibroid recurring following myomectomy is around 30%.
Hysterectomy: where in the uterus is removed when medical management fails or the size of fibroid is too big and causing symptoms.
Uterine artery embolization by blocking blood supply to the fibroid and causing them to shrink.
The choice of treatment depends on the size, location , symptoms and the desire of the individual to have children in future.
The chances of fibroid turning into cancer is very very low(1 in 1000). They are hormone sensitive tumours and mostly shrink after menopause but do not completely disappear.