A fibroid is a non-cancerous growth that mainly consists of muscle and fibrous tissue. Also called myomas, leiomyomas and fibromas, fibroids grow in or around the uterus area and can be as small as a pea or as large as a grapefruit. The fact that many people will not experience any symptoms at all makes it essential to schedule regular appointments with a gynecologist for a complete examination. When it is necessary to remove fibroids, it is dependent on their location, as well as their size, when it comes to determining how easy they will be to remove from the body.
Types of fibroids
There are four different types of fibroids:
- Intramural fibroids: The most common types of fibroids, which grow and stay within the uterine wall
- Subserosal fibroids: Fibroids that grow outside the uterine wall
- Pedunculated fibroids: Fibroids that can either grow within or outside the uterine wall
- Submucosal fibroids: The rarest type of fibroids, which grow within the uterine wall but have the potential to obtrude into the uterus
According to the National Institute of Health, up to 80 percent of women will have fibroids by the time they reach the age of 50.
How fibroids are diagnosed
A fibroid diagnosis will need to be determined by a gynecologist, who will need to perform a full pelvic examination on the patient in order to determine whether they have fibroids or not. During the examination, it is possible for the gynecologist may order additional tests that will give them the information they need to make a correct diagnosis.
Additional tests that may be necessary in order to provide a proper fibroid diagnosis include:
Common fibroid symptoms
Common fibroid symptoms are not always obvious, as most of them can seem normal. For example, pelvic cramping and heavy menstrual bleeding are two fibroid symptoms, which can be considered normal for some people.
Symptoms associated with fibroids include the following:
Possible causes of fibroids
While the cause of fibroids is still unknown, it is currently believed that fibroids are either related to a genetic issue or a hormone issue. Many health issues that people experience are a product of genetics, which is something they have no control over. When it comes to hormonal issues, it is believed that estrogen, progesterone, growth hormones and out-of-place cells are all considered to be factors.
A few factors that could possibly cause fibroids:
Not every woman who has fibroids needs to receive treatment. Instead, it may only be necessary for a gynecologist to simply monitor the overall growth of the fibroids. People who are currently pregnant or planning on having a family will often require a different type of treatment option compared to those who have already had their children or do not plan on having a family. The treatment options available today will depend on a few different factors, i.e., the types of fibroids present, how severe the symptoms are, age and overall health.
Today’s treatment options for addressing fibroids in women include the following:
At Camilla L. Marquez, MD , we can help you relieve the pain of fibroids. Visit us at our Fresno office today.
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