Uterine fibroids are often responsible for irregular menstrual patterns in women approaching/experiencing menopause and can occur in other special cases as well. This is generally characterized by an irregular, heavier flow than usual as well as bleeding in between period cycles.
Uterine fibroids can also exist without showing any symptoms at all and usually, these are the smaller ones that do not require any treatment but larger fibroids have to be treated with medication or surgery as per the requirement.
What are Uterine Fibroids?
Uterine Fibroids are non-cancerous growths of muscle on the walls of the uterus and are a common occurrence in women. These fibroids are usually harmless on their own, but there are chances that they can cause symptoms such as irregular bleeding and pain in the abdominal area as well as cramping.
The symptoms of uterine fibroids are:
Painful and excessive blood loss during periods ( menorrhagia )
Continuous urination is caused by the pressure of fibroids
Pain while having sex
Stasis of the lower bowel ( constipation)
Abdominal enlargement, cramps, and pain
Pressure on the bladder and urgent bowel movements
Anemia due to extensive blood loss
The link between Uterine Fibroids and Heavy Periods
Since uterine fibroids are knots of muscle that grow inside the uterus, they can directly affect menstrual cycles. Most of the time, these fibroids are harmless and benign (non-cancerous).
While the main reasons for heavy bleeding in periods are unknown, it is believed that fibroid changes the muscular contraction of the uterus. It then can prevent it from controlling the amount of bleeding during a cycle. Since fibroids compress veins in the uterine wall, this creates a dilation of the uterine lining, increasing the pressure in the veins, thus expanding the lining of the uterus and resulting in heavy and abnormal bleeding.
Treating Uterine Fibroids
The treatment for uterine fibroids varies depending on the size and number of fibroids present including the location at which they are present.