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Fibroids

A fibroid is a non-cancerous tumour that develops from the layer of the uterus. These growths are smooth muscles and fibrous tissues that vary in size ranging from small pea up to the size of a watermelon. Many women live with fibroids without their knowledge because there is no visible symptom. It is advised that women without symptoms should opt for observation rather than treatment

Types of fibroid

There are four types of fibroid classified based on its location in the womb, and they include:

Symptoms

Fibroid doesn’t often cause symptoms in some cases. One out of every three women having fibroid is likely to experience the following symptomswhich include:

Other possible symptoms that may be experienced include:

When to see your GP

Fibroids are sometimes diagnosed since they don’t often cause symptoms; they can be diagnosed by chance on one of your routine gynaecological examination, test or scan. Seeing your GP is important if you have persistent symptoms of fibroids so they can investigate the possible cause. You may be referred for an ultrasound scan to diagnose if he or she suspects a fibroid case.

Treatment

It is only recommended that women who are experiencing symptoms of fibroid go through fibroid treatment. Treatment may not be necessary in cases where the fibroid does not affect the quality of life. Medication and surgery are the two main treatments of fibroid and the choice of treatment to be used can be affected by factors such as the location of fibroids, the severity of symptoms, and plans of childbearing.

Medication

A drug called gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) is used which causes the body to produce less estrogen and progesterone making fibroid to shrink. GnRHa is only for short-term fibroid treatment. When used, it stops the menstrual cycle without affecting fertility. It also causes menopause-like symptoms such as a tendency to sweat more, vaginal dryness, hot flashes, and, in some cases, increase the risk of osteoporosis. GnRHa can be given before surgery to shrink the fibroids.

Other drugs can be used in the treatment of fibroid but may be less effective when treating larger fibroids; they include:

Surgery

Surgery may be needed for severe fibroid cases. The following are some of the procedures your GP might suggest in treating fibroids: