Are Fibroids Normal (and What Can I Do About Them)?

You’ve probably heard of fibroids, but you may not be exactly sure what they are. Fibroids are noncancerous muscle growths in your uterus. They’re smooth and they typically vary widely in size, growing anywhere from the size of a grain of rice to that of a large melon. 

When fibroids grow large enough, they can put pressure on your organs, increase your weight, and even stretch your uterus all the way to your ribcage. Fibroids can even affect your fertility and lead to difficulty conceiving. 

At the Ob-Gyn Center in Las Vegas, your reproductive health is our priority. Our team is here to provide you with the most innovative and effective treatment options to keep you at your best health. That’s why we’ve compiled this helpful guide to fibroids and how they can influence your reproductive health.

What causes fibroids?

Fibroids are a common problem. About 30% of women develop uterine fibroids by age 35, and that number jumps to 80% by age 50. 

Black women are more likely to develop uterine fibroids and are more likely to develop them at a younger age. Pregnant women are particularly prone to fibroids, especially during the first three months of pregnancy. 

Unfortunately, the exact cause of fibroids isn’t known, although research points to some factors that might contribute to their development, including:

Hormones

Irregularities in hormone levels, particularly raised levels of both estrogen and progesterone, have been shown to promote the growth of uterine fibroids. 

Genetics

Cells found in fibroids often have gene alterations that aren’t typically found in healthy uterine cells. 

Extracellular matrix

The extracellular matrix is a term for the material that makes your cells stick together. This material can make fibroids more fibrous, which can trigger changes in your cells and lead to increased and uncontrolled cell growth.

Leaving fibroids untreated

In many cases, fibroids are harmless and won’t impact your reproductive health or fertility. However, when they are a problem, fibroids can present with chronic physical problems and even infertility. 

The problem with fibroids is that most women don’t present with symptoms, and thus don’t even know that they have a problem. Fibroids are particularly problematic when they’re submucosal, or under the endometrium.   

Submucosal fibroids prevent blood flow from reaching your endometrium, preventing it from thickening and implanting a fertilized egg. Other kinds of fibroids that cause infertility grow on the outside surface of your uterus and are called subserosal fibroids. Either kind can cause infertility by blocking your fallopian tubes or even your cervix, blocking the paths of sperm and fertilized eggs. 

Treat your uterine fibroids today

At the Ob-Gyn Center, we have a variety of options for treating your uterine fibroids including medication, outpatient procedures, and surgery. Most options are fairly quick, convenient, and as minimally invasive as possible.  

Don’t wait for your uterine fibroids to become a problem. Call us or use the online request form to set up an appointment today. 

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