What are Uterine Fibroids?
Uterine fibroids, also known as leiomyomas, are noncancerous tumors that form on the uterus, most typically during the childbearing years. Uterine fibroids are typically not dangerous and they often come with no symptoms. According to Womenshealth.gov, 20-80% percent of women will have uterine fibroids before age 50, some without even knowing it.
What Causes Uterine Fibroids?
While doctors do not know for sure what exactly causes uterine fibroids, both your genes and hormones are thought to play a role in their development.
What Symptoms are Associated with Uterine Fibroids?
The majority of women who develop uterine fibroids experience no symptoms at all. In fact, they often don't even know they have the growths until their doctor discovers them during a routine exam.
Among women who do experience symptoms, however, lower back pain, pain during intercourse, heavy menstrual bleeding, an overactive bladder, pressure and fullness in the abdomen, and complications during pregnancy are among the most common. Infertility can be caused by uterine fibroids, but this is very rare.
What Treatments are Available for Uterine Fibroids?
Because most uterine fibroids are not serious most doctors will initially opt for a "wait and see" approach. If you are experiencing significant symptoms, or if the fibroids don't go away on their own, your doctor may recommend an ultrasound evaluation to gather more information. Additional treatment options, including medication and surgery may be recommended.