What are Fibroids

What are Fibroids

What are Fibroids?

Fibroids are benign tumors that grow in or around the uterus wall, causing symptoms such as cramping, heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, and pressure on your bladder or rectum. While common, fibroids aren’t cancerous and rarely need to be treated unless they cause serious pain or complications. What are fibroids? Are you one of the millions of women affected by this condition? This guide identifies what causes fibroids, their symptoms, and treatment options.

Why do fibroids develop?

Fibroids develop because the muscle walls in the uterus begin to thicken and grow. The cause is unclear, but it is more common in women of African American descent or who have had children. Frequently, a woman will experience irregular or heavy menstrual periods associated with pelvic pain, excessive bleeding, and blood clots. Unfortunately, in most cases, there is no definitive cause or way to prevent these benign tumors’ growth.

What are the different types of fibroids?

There are three types of uterine fibroids: submucosal, intramural, and pedunculated.

  • Submucosal uterine fibroids grow under the endometrium and can cause abnormal bleeding.
  • Intramural uterine fibroids grow inside the muscle layer of the uterus while
  • Pedunculated ones grow outside on the surface.

What causes fibroids?

There is no one clear cause of fibroid, but they can happen during or after pregnancy, puberty, menopause, or due to genetic predisposition. These are three main types: leiomyomas, myomas, and uterine polyps. These growths can grow to be large depending on how much hormone is in the area – generally, larger ones occur when progesterone is high, while smaller ones tend to develop with higher estrogen levels. Some things that might contribute to high levels of these hormones include obesity and diabetes. Fibroid tumors do not usually spread beyond the uterus but may occasionally extend into nearby pelvic tissues and organs like the bowel, bladder, or vagina, which increases your risk for pain and other symptoms that may be difficult to deal with alone.

Who is at risk for uterine fibroids?

Fibroids, or leiomyomas, are non-cancerous growths in and around the uterus. Most women will have some growth by the time they’re 50 years old. So here’s what you need to know: who’s at risk for uterine fibroids? 

Around 1 in 3 African American women experience uterine fibroids. If you have a mother or sister with them, there’s a greater chance you’ll develop them too. Women of Mediterranean descent may also be more likely to develop uterine fibroids than other races, especially if their family members have them. Other risks include excessive weight gain and hormones like testosterone or estrogen to help with perimenopause symptoms.

What are the symptoms of uterine fibroids?

The symptoms of it vary by patient. There may be few or no symptoms for years, then heavy bleeding begins, and the person will have extreme pain. These are the common symptoms:

  • Heavy bleeding abnormal for you
  • Pain in your lower abdomen or groin that can come in waves and feel like labor contractions
  • Frequent urination
  • Constipation

Most women will experience no symptoms at all. However, it can cause the following symptoms:  

  • Heavy or prolonged periods
  • Bleeding between periods
  • Pelvic pain and pressure
  • Frequent urination
  • Low back pain
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Difficulty getting pregnant

How are uterine fibroids diagnosed?

It grows in the uterus and can cause bleeding, pain, and pelvic pressure. Fibroid in small doses has little effect on a woman’s life. But if the fibroid is large enough, it can impair the ability to walk or even take care of normal daily tasks like going to the bathroom. Doctors diagnose uterine fibroids using imaging methods such as ultrasound, MRI, and CT scans.

The best diet for fibroid patients

To help reduce the symptoms of fibroids and to improve your overall health, you may want to avoid wheat and dairy. One of the best diets for patients with fibroids is the FODMAP diet because it’s low in certain types of carbohydrates that aren’t well-absorbed by the body and can trigger problems. This diet has also been found to help people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). The main foods with a higher level of FODMAPs include Apples, Apricots, Bananas, Blackberries, Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Butternut Squash, and Cauliflower.

What are the complications of uterine fibroids?

Uterine fibroids, or uterine myomas, are the most common non-cancerous tumor of the female reproductive system. They can be found in up to 50% of women at some point in their lifetime. There is not one known cause for them, but they are often genetic or related to a hormonal imbalance. As a result, you may experience excessive bleeding during your period, abdominal swelling, and pain during sex. Uterine can also lead to complications like anemia due to heavy bleeding and UTIs, which could affect bladder function.

Signs that you have a fibroid tumor…now what do you do about it?!

It is often difficult to figure out what is wrong with you if you have never had these problems. However, if your periods have become heavier, or if they last for a longer period than normal, you may want to consider the possibility that you have fibroid tumors in your uterus.


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