Did you know that most women experience uterine fibroids at one point in their lives? If you’re among them, Memorial Women’s Specialists in Houston, Texas, Mina Sinacori, MD, MPH, FACOG, and M. Bruce Christopherson, MD, FACOG, are highly skilled in diagnosing and treating uterine fibroids. They can help relieve symptoms and get you back to your normal routine quickly. Schedule an appointment today calling the office or using the online booking tool.

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What are uterine fibroids?

Uterine fibroids, also called leiomyomas, are noncancerous growths that develop within your uterus. They range in size from so tiny you can’t detect them with the human eye to so large they expand your uterus to reach your rib cage.

For many women, uterine fibroids are asymptomatic, and the only way you become aware of them is after a prenatal ultrasound or pelvic exam.

In other cases, fibroids cause painful and disruptive symptoms that require a prompt visit to Memorial Women’s Specialists for a diagnostic exam.

What are the symptoms of uterine fibroids?

Symptoms range from mild to severe and are steady or intermittent. Some of the more common symptoms of uterine fibroids include:

  • Heavy menstrual bleeding or periods lasting more than a week
  • Constipation
  • Frequent need to urinate
  • Pelvic pain or sensation of pressure
  • Backache or leg pain
  • Trouble fully emptying your bladder

If you notice changes in your menstrual cycle or experience these or other symptoms, book a visit with Memorial Women’s Specialists to find answers and begin a treatment path.

What causes uterine fibroids?

The exact cause remains unknown, but researchers believe that fibroids develop when a stem cell in the muscular walls of your uterus divides at an abnormal pace. Additional risk factors for developing uterine fibroids include:

  • Genetic predisposition to fibroids
  • Race
  • Obesity
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Diet low in vegetables and high in red meat

It’s important to seek treatment if uterine fibroids cause heavy bleeding, as anemia can develop over time. Some fibroids also have a negative impact on your fertility.

How are uterine fibroids treated?

If treatment is needed, there are a number of available options to choose from. The team works with you to develop a personalized plan tailored to your needs.

Many women respond well to medications that alter their hormonal balance. These drugs often slow or stop menstruation, which also helps improve anemia. Other medications work by shrinking fibroids or providing pain management.

If surgery is required, minimally invasive surgical procedures destroy fibroids by cutting off their blood supply. These procedures are often done laparoscopically or using robotic-assisted technology.

Another treatment option, endometrial ablation, uses carefully controlled heat to destroy the lining of your uterus, which stops or greatly reduces your menstrual flow.

In severe cases, your provider may recommend a hysterectomy, if other treatments have not been effective.

To learn more about diagnosing and treating uterine fibroids, schedule an appointment with Memorial Women’s Specialists today by calling the office or booking online.