Uterine fibroids are common growths that affect many women, but there’s still a lot of mystery surrounding them and how they’re managed. Here’s what the top fibroid specialist in Greenbelt, Maryland wants you to know about uterine fibroids, including signs, diagnosis, and available treatments!
What Are Fibroids, and Why Do They Occur in the First Place?
Uterine fibroids, medically termed leiomyomas, are noncancerous growths made of muscle cells and fibrous tissues. They develop in or on the wall of your uterus and can vary in size, ranging from small nodules to large masses.
The exact cause for leiomyomas is not fully understood at this time, however several factors can contribute to their development. Hormones, specifically estrogen and progesterone, are believed to play a role in their growth.
Age, as well as family history, race, and other genetic factors influence the likelihood of fibroid formation.
What Are the Symptoms?
Uterine fibroids can cause a range of symptoms that vary in severity for each woman. Most small leiomyomas don’t cause any at all. Common symptoms include:
- Bleeding in between menstrual cycles
- Constipation or difficulty with bowel movements
- Enlarged abdomen if growths are large enough
- Frequent urination or increased urgency when large fibroids press against the bladder
- General pelvic pain or pressure, described as a dull ache or heaviness in lower abdomen
- Infertility or complications with pregnancy
- Menstrual changes like heavy bleeding, prolonged periods, and irregular cycles
- Pelvic pain / discomfort during sexual intercourse
Make sure to note the symptoms you experience and how severely or frequently they occur.
How Does a Fibroid Specialist in Greenbelt, Maryland Diagnose This Condition?
Diagnosing uterine fibroids often involves a combination of methods.
All diagnostic consultations begin with discussing your medical history with your doctor. This includes discussing your symptoms, how long you have had them and their severity, and any medical conditions you have if applicable.
Your specialist then performs a physical examination to feel for any abnormalities in the uterus. From there, an abdominal or transvaginal ultrasound, magnetic resource imaging (MRI), or other diagnostic test may be recommended to identify your fibroids.
In some cases, a minimally invasive biopsy may be performed to confirm the presence of leiomyomas or conditions that mimic the symptoms of them.
What Are the Treatment Options for Uterine Fibroids?
Your fibroids may not require treatment at all, especially if you don’t experience any symptoms or the growths are small. In the event that you do require treatment or management, your specialist will recommend one or more of the following:
- At-home remedies like dietary changes, exercise, massage, and / or pain management
- Focused ultrasound surgery (FUS) using ultrasound waves to destroy the leiomyomas
- Hysterectomy in severe cases where fertility is not a concern or priority for the patient
- Medications such as birth control pills or gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonists to shrink fibroids
- Minimally invasive procedures, including uterine artery embolization or removal of the fibroids while preserving the uterus
- Myolysis, which uses radiofrequency or laser energy to shrink the growths
Your doctor will use your diagnosis, concerns, insurance coverage and budget, and similar matters from your initial consultation to determine the appropriate solution for you.
Find Comprehensive Care for All of Your Feminine Health Concerns at Women’s HealthCare Specialist!
Dr. Navita Modi is our leading fibroid specialist in Greenbelt, Maryland, specializing in minimally invasive OB/GYN procedures to improve and restore your health! Dr. Modi and team utilize advanced techniques and state-of-the-art technologies for diagnosis and treatment, ensuring that our patients receive quality care.
Call us today at 301-812-3400 to book an appointment and find solutions to your women’s healthcare concerns for an improved quality of life!