It’s estimated that 20-50% of women have uterine fibroids, whether they know it or not. Fibroids can be so small that you won’t develop problems, or they can grow large enough to cause pain and heavy bleeding. The compassionate doctors at Hill Country OB/GYN have helped many women get relief from their symptoms by successfully treating fibroids. If you develop fibroid symptoms, call one of the offices in Austin and Dripping Springs, Texas.
+ What are Uterine Fibroids?
Uterine fibroids are benign (noncancerous) growths in the muscles that line your uterus. Although it’s not as common, they may also grow in the uterine lining or outside your uterus.
Fibroids can be so small they’re not detectable during a pelvic exam. They can also grow to be quite large.
Each fibroid grows at its own rate; some grow rapidly while others develop gradually over many years. You can have multiple, different-sized fibroids at the same time.
+ What Symptoms Will I Experience with Fibroids?
You may not have any symptoms if you have small fibroids. With larger fibroids, you may develop:
- Pelvic pain
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Long menstrual periods
- Lower back pain
- Bleeding between periods
- Frequent or difficult urination
It’s important to schedule an appointment at Hill Country OB/GYN any time you have ongoing or severe pain, abnormal bleeding, or difficulty urinating. Your doctor can treat the problem and relieve your symptoms.
+ How are Uterine Fibroids treated?
Your treatment depends on the severity of your symptoms, your age, overall health, and the size of your fibroids. If your symptoms are mild, your doctor at Hill Country OB/GYN may recommend watchful waiting.
It’s safe to keep a watch on small fibroids and let them go untreated because fibroids are not cancerous and they usually don’t interfere with pregnancy. They also stop growing or shrink after menopause.
When your symptoms are uncomfortable, your doctor at Hill Country OB/GYN may prescribe one of several medications to control heavy bleeding, alleviate pain, or shrink your fibroids. A progestin-releasing intrauterine device may also help reduce bleeding.
When conservative therapies don’t provide symptom relief, you may undergo minimally invasive surgery or vascular treatment, such as:
- Myomectomy: fibroids are removed leaving your uterus intact for future pregnancies
- Hysterectomy: the uterus is removed
- Uterine artery embolization: blood supply to the fibroids is blocked, so they shrink
If you’re experiencing uncomfortable fibroid symptoms, call Hill Country OB/GYN today.