Holy Name Medical Associates
OBGYNs located in Hackensack, NJ
Unless you’re experiencing a sudden change in the flow of your period or rapid increase in the size of your belly, you may not even know you have a fibroid. But if you’re experiencing either one of these symptoms, the women’s health experts at Holy Name Medical Associates in Hackensack, New Jersey, provide a diagnosis and treatment plan to help you manage your fibroid and reduce some of the unpleasant side effects. Call today or book an appointment online.
What are fibroids?
Fibroids are noncancerous tumors made up of muscle that grow in your uterus. Fibroids are very common, and most women develop fibroids during their reproductive years. They can be as small as a strawberry seed or as large as a cantaloupe.
Doctors don't know precisely why women develop fibroids, but believe it may have something to do with hormone levels. Fibroids can proliferate during surges in hormones, such as when you're pregnant, and shrink with the use of anti-hormone medication.
What are the symptoms of fibroids?
You may have a fibroid and not experience any symptoms, but for some women, the symptoms make life more difficult.
Common symptoms include:
- Heavy menstrual flow, longer menstrual periods, or an increase in cramping
- Back or leg pain
- Feeling of heaviness in the abdomen
- Constipation or difficulty urinating
- Increase in the urge to urinate
- Protruding abdomen
- Pain during intercourse
How are fibroids diagnosed?
You may first learn of your fibroid during a routine pelvic exam. To confirm that it is, in fact, a fibroid, the healthcare professionals at Holy Name Medical Associates may recommend additional testing such as an ultrasound, X-ray, or MRI.
The doctor may also recommend a blood draw to check your blood count for anemia.
How are fibroids treated?
There’s no one right way to treat your fibroid. If the fibroid isn’t causing you any problems, the team at Holy Name Medical Associates may recommend a simple wait-and-see approach.
However, if the symptoms are too much for you, the team can go over all your options, including medications and surgery.
- Over-the-counter pain relievers
- Birth control pills
- Anti-hormone medication such as gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist
- Hysterectomy — removal of the uterus
- Myomectomy — removal of the fibroid
- Myolysis — a minimally invasive procedure that uses a current to freeze the fibroid to destroy it
- Endometrial ablation — removal of the lining of your uterus
- Uterine artery embolization — a procedure that cuts off blood flow to the fibroid to shrink it and reduce symptoms
If you're concerned that you might be encountering symptoms caused by a fibroid, call the Holy Name Medical Associates office or book an appointment online to discuss all your treatment options.