Uterine Fibroids is a common entity women suffer from. Fibriods are benign tutors of the uterus. A rounded world appearance of musculature that starts developing in the uterus later develops in a fibroid in the uterus.
What are Fibroids? Its types and symptoms.
A lot depends on where the fibroid is located. The uterine cavity has three layers. The inner most layer from where endometrium grows and shed off as regular menstrual cycle. Middle layer is a musculature layer. And the outer layer is covering of the uterus known as serosa. The fibroids can occur in either of the three layers. If they are growing close to the cavity of the uterus they are known as submucosal fibroid i.e 0-1. IF they are in the musculature where maximum of the fibroids are. Then they are known as intramural fibroids. ie. 2-5. If in the outer layer of the uterus. They are known as subserosal fibroids. The fibroid near the uterine cavity is usually the one responsible for the symptoms. Women may have heavy bleeding known as Menorrhagia. Or irregular bleeding during the cycle. This is the main symptom that a fibroid is present. If the fibroids becomes as large as 5-6 cm or 10-15 cm and occupying a lot of abdominal cavity then it causes pressure symptoms such as pressure in the rectum, bowels, bladder which can lead to other symptoms like frequent urination, constipation or pain while defecating. Over time sometimes a huge mass can be found in the abdomen when a women is not aware of the presence of fibroids in her body. Fibroids can be 1. asymptomatic 2. Symptomatic ie. having pressure symptoms, menorrhagia etc. Generally Fibroids occur in late 30s’-40s. But there also cases of fibroids in adolescents.
Treatment for fibroids.
If the fibroid is asymtomatic i.e. is not causing any symptoms in the body then one should not do anything and leave it as it is. If the fibroid is more than 5-6 cm and causing pressure symptoms or if there is multiple presence of fibriods then one may remove the fibroid by Laparoscopy procedure which is a sophisticated procedure having better recovery result.
The fibroids especially the ones near to the cavity may also be responsible for interrupting a women in conceiving. The ones not close would generally not cause in infertility. The fibroids near the uterine cavity is generally removed and the removal is not difficult and done by hysteroscopy, a relatively simple surgery.
Presence of Fibroids when a women is pregnant.
Sometimes a women, may discover the presence of fibroids during pregnancy and wonder about its effects on the baby. Generally the baby is not affected as the fibroids flattens as the pregnancy grows. If the placenta is adherent to the fibroid then one may have low birth rate because the blood supple to the baby is affected. A women can resort to the cesarean procedure if the fibroids positions is blocking the way for the baby’s head. Fibroids in pregnancy is rare and is a benign tumor generally causing no problem.
Treatment besides surgery.
1. Injections to suppress/shrink the fibroids
2. Drugs like Mifeprintone to decrease the blood supply of the fibroids to decrease the size, in decreasing symptoms like menorrhagia.
3. Ultrasound waves (Experimental)
Such drugs are effective till the time they are used and the fibroids may grow back.
We are yet to have a medical treatment for fibroid removal or shrink. Surgery still remains the main option for treatment. But one has to chose which fibriods would be beneficial after removal.