Uterine fibroids, also known as leiomyomas, are noncancerous growths that develop within the muscular wall of the uterus. While they are generally harmless, they can cause many women a range of symptoms and discomfort.
We will explore the signs and symptoms of uterine fibroids, shedding light on this common condition that affects numerous women worldwide.
1. Heavy or Prolonged Menstrual Bleeding:
One of the most common symptoms associated with uterine fibroids is heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding. Women with fibroids may experience longer-lasting periods with increased blood flow, often resulting in the need to change sanitary products frequently. This excessive bleeding can lead to fatigue and anemia over time.
2. Pelvic Pain and Pressure:
Uterine fibroids can cause pelvic pain and pressure due to their size and location. Depending on their place within the uterus, fibroids may exert pressure* on nearby organs, such as the bladder or rectum, leading to discomfort or feeling of fullness in the pelvic region. Some women may also experience lower back pain or pain during sexual intercourse.
*Pelvic pain and pressure could potentially also be a sign of an ovarian cyst. View more on ovarian cysts and their symptoms in our article here.
3. Urinary and Bowel Problems:
Larger fibroids that press against the bladder can cause frequent urination or difficulty emptying the bladder, resulting in a frequent urge to urinate or an increased frequency of urinary tract infections. Fibroids near the rectum can create pressure, leading to constipation or difficulty with bowel movements.
4. Abdominal Enlargement and Swelling:
In some cases, uterine fibroids can cause the abdomen to appear enlarged or swollen. This symptom is more common in women with multiple or larger fibroids. As fibroids grow in size, they can give the abdomen a distended appearance, resembling a pregnancy.
5. Menstrual Irregularities:
Apart from heavy bleeding, uterine fibroids can also cause menstrual irregularities. Some women may experience shorter or longer menstrual cycles, irregular bleeding between periods, or missed periods. These changes in menstrual patterns are often attributed to hormonal imbalances caused by fibroids.
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Recognizing the signs and symptoms of uterine fibroids is crucial for early detection and appropriate management. If you have experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above or suspect you may have uterine fibroids, book a consultation with your healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and personalised treatment plan.
Remember, while uterine fibroids can cause discomfort, various treatment options are available to alleviate symptoms and improve your quality of life.
To book an appointment with our highly trained and experienced gynaecology team, visit their services page here or call (345) 745-7450.
Mayo Clinic. (n.d.). Uterine fibroids – Symptoms and causes. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/uterine-fibroids/symptoms-causes/syc-20354288.