Posted By Dr. Deepti Asthana on 27-02-2020
Fibroids are also called leiomyomas and myomas. They are noncancerous benign tumors made up of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue. They grow in the woman's womb when they are in their childbearing years. Girls or women have generally more than one fibroid. The fibroid can vary in size.
It can range from the size of a bean to as large as a melon. Fibroids also vary in the location in the body. They can modify the size and location of the uterus. They can also affect the cervix. The size and location are often the reason whether the person experience symptoms or experience infertility and necessitate treatment.
There are three different types of fibroids. They differ based on where they are located in the body. The types include:
Can Fibroids Cause Infertility?
There are so many factors that play a part in affecting the ability of a woman to get pregnant and deliver a baby. One of the factors that affect about 25 to 50% of women is uterine fibroids. It is a common medical condition. If a mother has fibroids, there is a big possibility that her daughter might have them as well.
Whether fibroids cause infertility or not has been a complex issue. According to studies, about 5 - 10% of girls or women having infertility have fibroids in the body. It is usually the size and the location of the fibroids that cause the problems. There are cases when fibroids can affect the ability to get pregnant and deliver a baby. This is caused when the fibroids are very large- larger than 6 cm in diameter and are located inside the uterine cavity.
Research also suggests that it is only submucosal fibroids which protrude into the uterus can affect fertility in women. Women having fibroids is not criteria for facing infertility. But if the problem persists, a woman should consult her partner and find out if the other factors are responsible before proceeding for the treatment of fibroids.
A fertility specialist can be of great help in analyzing whether fibroids are an issue for you or not. He/she can also tell whether any treatment is necessary or not. Uterine fibroids do affect your fertility in many different ways. But it depends on how the fibroids' size and location modify the uterus, cervix or fallopian tubes. Some ways on how the fibroids can cause infertility are as under:
What are the Symptoms and the Treatment of the fibroids?
Fibroids are non-cancerous tumors. They originate from the muscle layers of the womb. They generally develop in women who are in the age group between 15 to 50 years of age. These are the reproductive years during which estrogen levels are very high. According to studies, on average every third woman in the world experiences the fibroid formation in their body. They experience the following symptoms:
Fibroids usually need no treatment. The treatment should depend on your situation. The treatment should also depend on whether there are any other reasons for infertility. The treatment is only advised if the symptoms are severe. At first place, the doctor will recommend the treatment through medication. Medications may include the following:
Surgery for the treatment of fibroids is recommended only in cases where severe fibroids do not respond to more conservative treatment options like medications, etc. Depending on the severity, different procedures may be adopted. The procedures include:
An MRI scans and locates the fibroids in the body. High energy ultrasound waves are then delivered to shrink them.
Author: Dr. Deepti Asthana has been associated with Fortis Memorial research institute Gurgaon for the past four years and is working as a consultant there at present.