Heavy menstrual bleeding


Fibroids, also known as uterine leiomyomas, are noncancerous growths of the uterus that often appear during childbearing years. They can vary in size, number, and location within the uterus. While many women with fibroids may not experience any symptoms, others may have symptoms ranging from mild to severe. Some common symptoms of fibroids include:

  1. Heavy menstrual bleeding: Fibroids can cause prolonged or heavy menstrual bleeding (menorrhagia), which can lead to anemia and fatigue.

  2. Pelvic pain and pressure: Fibroids can cause discomfort or pain in the pelvic area, sometimes accompanied by pressure on the bladder or rectum, leading to frequent urination or constipation.

  3. Enlargement of the abdomen: Larger fibroids can cause the uterus to enlarge, leading to a feeling of fullness or bloating in the abdomen.

  4. Pain during intercourse: Fibroids may cause pain or discomfort during sexual intercourse.

  5. Backache or leg pains: Fibroids can press on nerves, leading to backache or leg pains.

Treatment options for fibroids depend on various factors including the size and location of the fibroids, the severity of symptoms, the woman’s age, and her desire for future fertility. Some of the treatment options include:

  1. Watchful waiting: If fibroids are small and not causing symptoms, a doctor may recommend monitoring them over time without treatment.

  2. Medications: Certain medications, such as hormonal birth control pills, progestin-releasing intrauterine devices (IUDs), or GnRH agonists, can help manage symptoms like heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pain by regulating hormone levels.

  3. Minimally invasive procedures: Procedures such as uterine artery embolization (UAE), which involves blocking the blood supply to the fibroids, or MRI-guided focused ultrasound surgery (FUS), which uses ultrasound waves to destroy fibroids, can be options for women who wish to avoid surgery and preserve their uterus.

  4. Surgical options: If symptoms are severe or if fertility is not a concern, surgical options such as myomectomy (removal of fibroids while preserving the uterus) or hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) may be recommended.

  5. Endometrial ablation: This procedure involves destroying the lining of the uterus, which can help reduce menstrual bleeding in women with fibroids.

It’s important for women with fibroids to discuss their symptoms and treatment preferences with their healthcare provider to determine the best course of action for their individual situation.

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