Uterine Fibroids (fibromyoma)

Also, called myoma or leiomyoma, but most commonly called fibroids. Fibroids grow in the uterus, and are among the most common medical conditions affecting women. Fibroids are almost, always beign (non-cancerous) tumours, which grow from the muscle wall of the uterus.

Fibroids may grow as large as a football, and is usually when women go to their doctor. But, most fibroids are discovered during routine pelvic examinations. A hysterectomy is usually perfomed to remove the fibroid, and the uterus; however, the uterus may be preserved in relatively new surgery called a myomectomy.

Symptoms include:

heavier than usual menstrual bleeding

bleeding between periods

abdominal swelling

feeling of pelvic pressure or heaviness

urge to pass urine (as fibroid presses on bladder)

feeling of constipation (as fibroid presses on bowel)

difficulty conceiving (due to pressure on fallopian tubes)

Important note – these symptoms are not diagnostic of just uterine fibroids, and some women may not have any symptoms at all, so it is important to have a regular pelvic examination –  usually done by a doctor, following the all important Pap smear – all sexually active women are advised to have a Pap smear every two years, unless advised otherwise.

These Australian websites contain more information, or more detailed information, concerning fibroids, diagnosis options, and both surgical and non-surgical treatment options:

 

Uterine fibroids: what you need to know 

Dr Feelgood’s FAQ’s on Fibroids

Myomectomy on the Better Health Channel

Fibroids “Fast facts” on myDr