What are the Symptoms and Causes of Uterine Fibroids? 

Uterine Fibroids – Symptoms, Causes and Impact on Fertility

Many women develop uterine fibroids at some point in life. However, because uterine fibroids rarely cause symptoms, you may be unaware that you have them. During a pelvic exam or a prenatal ultrasound, your doctor may discover fibroids by chance.

 

What are Uterine Fibroids?

Also known as leiomyomas, myomas or fibromas, uterine fibroids are non-cancerous (benign) tumours made of the muscles and connective tissue growing from the wall of the uterus. The likelihood of uterine fibroids turning into cancer is rare, nor do uterine fibroids raise the risk of getting affected by uterine cancer.

 

Fibroids can have different locations, shapes and sizes. You may not be able to see some fibroids with a naked eye, while some fibroids are so big that they can enlarge the uterus or even change the shape of the uterus. Uterine fibroids can evolve as a single nodule or in clusters of varying sizes.

 

Uterine fibroids are mostly seen in women of reproductive age or around 50 years of age. However, women under the age of 20 rarely get uterine fibroids. Generally, women with fibroids do not experience any symptoms. You may not feel any pain or other symptom even if you have uterine fibroids. However, fibroids may show different signs or symptoms in some women.

 

Even though uterine fibroids cannot turn fatal, they impose many risks. In today’s post by Banker IVF, we go through uterine fibroids symptoms, its causes and more.

 

What are the Symptoms of Uterine Fibroids?

Some of the most common symptoms amongst women with fibroids are:

 

  • Heavy bleeding during periods
  •   Periods lasting longer than usual
  •   Infertility
  •   Extreme pelvic pain
  •   Backache
  •   Constipation
  •   Painful periods
  •   Spotting or bleeding in between periods
  •   Unexplained reduction in red blood cells
  •   Frequent urination
  •   Problem emptying the bladder

Who is at the Risk of Uterine Fibroids?

Those women who have one or more of any of these factors may be at risk of uterine fibroids:

  •         Age
  •         Obese
  •         Family history of uterine fibroids
  •         No history of pregnancy
  •         Food additive consumptions
  •         Blood pressure
  •         Lack of Vitamin D

What Causes Uterine Fibroids?

Do you ever wonder what causes uterine fibroids to grow? Here are some reasons that could be a cause.

 

Not Having Children

The more children you have, it appears, the less likely you are to grow fibroids. Researchers aren’t sure why this is, and it’s important to note that this doesn’t mean women must have more children simply to avert fibroids.

 

Hormones

Fibroids have more estrogen and progesterone receptors than uterine muscle cells in general. Because of a reduction in hormone production, fibroids tend to compress after menopause.

 

Not Eating Fruits Adequately

Eating fruits and vegetables every day is good for health, and almost everyone is aware of the same. Many researchers suggest that consuming fruits, especially citrus fruits, two times a day reduces the risk of getting uterine fibroids. If you aren’t used to eating fruits and vegetables regularly, perhaps knowing that you may be lowering your risk of developing fibroids will motivate you to eat them more frequently.
Genetics

 

The growth of uterine fibroids involves an intricate interaction between genes and the environment, but it is unknown how much this impacts disease severity. Some fibroids are caused by inherited genetic mutations. But even so, it’s not like all uterine fibroids advance due to a genetic factor. Other lifestyle and environmental factors also play a part.

 

Menstruating Early

Fibroids are hormonally responsive, particularly estrogen. This could explain why women who start menstruating even before the age of 11 are more prone to developing fibroids than women who start menstruating after the age of 13. Of course, there is nothing much you can really do to change the age at which you began menstruating.

 

Lack of Vitamin D

Vitamin D, a fat-soluble vitamin, is mostly found in dairy food items. When our skin is exposed to sunlight, our body makes vitamin D. Vitamin D has been shown in studies to inhibit cell growth and control the immune system. Vitamin D also inhibits fibroid cell production of fibrous tissue. So, it is essential to ensure that your intake of Vitamin D is quite sufficient.

 

Stress

Life events that have been stressful can be linked to uterine fibroids. Stress may change the hormone levels and thereby encourage the growth of uterine fibroids. Keep your stress level low by taking utmost care of yourself. Sleep better, eat right and exercise every day to ensure your physical and mental well-being and to hinder the growth of uterine fibroids too.

 

Uterine Fibroids and Fertility

Even though it is not that common, for some women, uterine fibroids and fertility are related, and they may make it troubling to get pregnant or carry a pregnancy to a full term. Uterine fibroids do not hamper ovulation. However, it prevents the uterus from doing its job to sustain birth and pregnancy.

 

Submucosal fibroids are the most common type of fibroids that impact fertility. This type of uterine fibroids may deflect blood flow aside from the uterine lining, stopping it from enlarging and blocking implantation or embryo development. Other types of uterine fibroids may also affect fertility due to their relative position and size, but it is not common.

 

Subserosal fibroids on the uterine lining can impede the passage of sperm or a fertilised egg through the cervix or fallopian tubes. Large fibroids, or multiple fibroids, that change the structure of the uterus, may cause miscarriage because they limit the uterus’s capacity to grow and acclimate a developing embryo.

 

If you have uterine fibroids and are having trouble getting pregnant, talk to Dr Manish Banker about your issues regarding fertility and know the best possible treatments. And, if you need more understanding on this topic, read on – Uterine Fibroids – Signs, Diagnosis and Treatment.

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