How and why of uterine fibroids

Non-cancerous growths found within the uterus are termed as uterine fibroids. It may also appear outside the uterus wall. Also termed as fibromyomas, leiomyomas or simply myomas, these fibroids are generally harmless. In most cases, they go unnoticed for long. They finally get discovered mainly during a prenatal ultrasound or pelvic examination. The fact is that three out of every four women are likely to have uterine fibroids. Fibroids need to be urgently treated only if they cause sudden and sharp pelvic pain.

The other major symptoms of uterine fibroids include extremely painful periods with severe bleeding, pain during intercourse, difficultly while the bladder is being emptied, spotting between periods etc. Constipation, backache, urinary inconsistencies etc are also found in certain women. The symptoms of uterine fibroids are mainly based on its location.

Those fibroids that grow in to the uterus cavity are called as submucosal fibroids. Such fibroids result in increased menstrual bleeding. Uterine fibroids that protrude out of the uterus are called subserosal fibroids. In that case, the fibroids may exert pressure on the bladder and might result in urinary irregularities. Fibroids that get projected from the back of the uterus might press hard on the rectum and will result in constipation. If the pressure is exerted on the spinal nerves, the result is severe backache.

Uterine fibroids are the result of the fast-paced repeated reproduction of a single cell found on the smooth muscular wall of the uterus. The process eventually results in the formation of a pale, rubbery mass that is distinct from its surrounding tissues. This mass is what we call as a fibroid. Uterine fibroids vary in their size. They can be as small as a seedling or as large as a big ball. Certain fibroids are so tiny that they are undetectable with human eye. Certain others are so big that the very functioning of the uterus gets affected adversely. They can be either single or multiple and in extreme cases might bloat up the uterus to the rib cage.

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