How are uterine fibroids detected?
Some may never be detected, but larger fibroids or those that cause symptoms are often felt during a pelvic exam or seen on an imaging
test, like an ultrasound.
Common Uterine Fibroids Symptoms
Many women have fibroids. Most fibroids do not cause symptoms, so they often go undetected. Women who do experience symptoms may notice:
- Heavy bleeding during menstruation.
- Longer than normal menstrual cycles (more than a week).
- Pelvic pain.
- Pelvic pressure.
- Urinary problems, like frequent urination or difficulty emptying the bladder all the way.
- Back or leg pain.
Women who bleed excessively from fibroids may become anemic due to blood loss.
There are not many known risks for developing uterine fibroids. Any woman of reproductive age may develop them. A few factors that may increase your risk include:
- Family history and heredity: If your mother or a sister has or had fibroids, your risk may be greater.
- Race: African American women are at higher risk for developing uterine fibroids, and if they do develop them, they’re more likely to have larger fibroids or multiple fibroids.
Other factors that may have an impact on developing fibroids:
- Early onset of menstruation.
- Hormonal birth control use.
- Vitamin D deficiency.
- Alcohol consumption.
- A diet high in red meat and low in fruit, green vegetables, and dairy.
Is there a way to avoid uterine fibroids?
There is no known way to avoid developing uterine fibroids Maintaining a healthy weight and making certain lifestyle choices (like eating a diet high in vegetables and fruits and low in red meat) may decrease your risk.