Uterine myoma: when to worry? Symptoms, surgery and treatment of uterine fibroid
The uterine myoma, also called uterine fibroid, is a benign tumor consisting of an abnormal growth of the uterine muscle or the fibro-connective component. It would be more correct to define the first type as fibroid and the second myoma, but they are commonly used as synonyms.
Uterus myoma is not dangerous in itself and is indeed the most common pathology among female genital ones, so much so that about 70% of women are considered to be at risk. Only 0.5% of fibroids can turn into cancer. this, however, uterine myomas can cause even serious disorders, from bleeding to pain up to fertility problems, and should therefore not be underestimated.
It is a disease with a strong genetic predisposition: if the triggering causes are difficult to know, it is necessary to take into account your family history to understand if you are at risk or not. Obesity can also be a predisposing factor.
Generally uterine myomas arise between the ages of 45 and 55, but they can also occur from the age of 35. There are different types: those called "subserosis", which develop on the surface of the "uterus; the" intramural ", in the thickness of the wall of the uterus; the "submucosis", inside the cavity of the uterus. The former are mostly asymptomatic, while the others affect the endometrium, causing more evident symptoms.
Let's find out together what these symptoms are, what treatments, when there is a need for surgery and what happens if you have a uterine myoma in menopause and during pregnancy. First, however, this video will help you better understand what a fibroid is. :
Symptoms of uterine myoma
The myoma of the uterus, in 30% of cases, does not present symptoms: it will be the gynecologist, during a simple check-up visit, to find its presence. In the remaining 70% of cases, however, it can cause even very severe pain in the pelvic area .
There may be phenomena of dysmenorrhea (ie very strong menstrual pain due to continuous contractions of the uterus that tries to eliminate the fibroid) or metrorrhagia: blood loss between one menstruation and the other. Equally probable are menorrhagia (very heavy menstrual flow) and polymenorrhea (irregular blood loss before the actual period arrives).
Other frequent symptoms are anemia, a feeling of swelling and fatigue, pain in the sacral and lumbar area, difficulty in urination (or the need to urinate frequently), pain during sexual intercourse, weight gain and problems with constipation.
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Is uterine fibroid dangerous? When to worry
As we have said, uterine myoma is a benign tumor and only in a very low percentage can it evolve into a tumor. There is therefore no need to worry too much, although it is always good to keep the fibroids under control. The severity of the symptoms they cause depends very much on the age, the future expectations of the woman, the type of myoma and the clinical conditions general of the patient. It will therefore be good to evaluate each individual case.
Generally speaking, it is mainly submucosal and intramural fibroids that cause more problems than subserosal ones, because they address the inside of the uterus. Very often women who discover they have a myoma fear they will not be able to get pregnant, but it is not so: there are very few cases in which this pathology becomes an obstacle to conception!
Intervention and treatment
In most cases, if you have one or more asymptomatic and small uterine myomas, no specific therapy is necessary: it will be sufficient to undergo regular check-ups by your gynecologist. more or less painful symptoms are present, pharmacological treatment is recommended.
The drugs that are generally prescribed are of the hormonal type and could lead not only to the elimination of symptoms, but of the myoma itself.
In the event that the fibroid does not respond to drug therapy, surgery can be used. One can think of a "vaginal or abdominal hysterectomy which, by removing the uterus in its entirety or partially, represents a definitive solution, but not always easy to accept.
Less invasive, however, is the option of myomectomy, which removes the single fibroid, but with the risk that it may recur. Another alternative is that of embolization of the uterine arteries. your doctor of choice: there are many personal factors to take into consideration for such a choice.
Uterine myoma in pregnancy and menopause
In the period of menopause, the volume of fibroids tends to decrease spontaneously, leading to a marked decrease in symptoms, if not their disappearance. If you have a myoma in the uterus, then menopause is not bad news at all! This is because the growth of myomas is closely linked to the production of estrogen.
It is not uncommon, however, that uterine myomas occur during pregnancy. Often, indeed, it is precisely during the check-ups for gestation that you realize you have them, especially if they are asymptomatic! "d" anxiety, there is actually no need to worry too much: the incidence of fibroids on pregnancy does not exceed 2.6%.
Any complications are linked to a possible increase in the size of the fibroid in pregnancy, which could lead in extreme cases to bleeding, pain and problems with the fetus. The important thing is to keep the situation under control with ultrasounds and gynecological inspections, in order to analyze the volume of the fibroid, its development and cellular composition.
To know you better:
-The book of the vagina: Wonders and mysteries of the female sex
-The wisdom of the uterus
If not in the most serious cases, there is a tendency to avoid surgery, possibly to be postponed to the period following the birth of the baby. If you are pregnant, browse our album: you will find yourself in the little big daily challenges that a pregnant woman must to sustain!
For more useful information on uterine myoma, you can visit the Humanitas website.