Fibroids are tumors of the female reproductive system made up of muscle cells and connective tissue. More than 99% of fibroid tumors are non-cancerous, though larger tumors may require surgical removal. There is no clearly known cause of fibroids, though it is believed that they begin as one aberrant muscle cell in the uterus, which then multiplies rapidly due to the exposure of estrogen.

There are several fibroid treatment options, though asymptomatic fibroids in post-menopausal women are often left to a “watchful waiting” approach to avoid unnecessary surgery. Uterine fibroid treatment can include:

  • Conservative surgical therapy
    • Surgical removal of fibroids while leaving the uterus intact for potential future pregnancies
  • Hysterectomy
    • For extreme cases or in women who do not intend to reproduce again, a hysterectomy removes the entire uterus from the body
  • Anti-hormonal agents
    • Some drugs stop the production of estrogen, which can be effective in fibroid treatment since estrogen accelerates the growth of fibroids
  • Anti-inflammatory painkillers
    • For women who experience pelvic pain, anti-inflammatory painkillers are proven to minimize discomfort
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woman with fibroids