Uterine fibroids - Introduction

Definition

Uterine fibroids, leiomyomas or myomas are the most common benign tumour in women and may cause heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain and pressure related symptoms such as urinary incontinence, urinary frequency and pressure over the bladder. They may be a cause of infertility or cause pain during sexual intercourse. They arise in the uterus wall and according to their location they are submucosal, intramural or subserosal. They may be single or, most frequently, multiple. The size range from millimetres to over 20 cm.

Treatment

The traditional treatments are both medical and surgical. The medical management includes birth control pills, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and hormones.
Surgical treatment includes miomectomy (fibroid removal) and hysterectomy (uterus removal).

As an alternative, uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) has been performed since 1995.

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