Uterine Fibroids Treatment

Uterine Fibroids Treatment

A benign, or noncancerous growth, in the uterus, uterine fibroids can be a painful and uncomfortable condition, although they are not life-threatening or cancerous. Many women have fibroids at some point during their lives, but fibroids can be so small they are undetectable, while others can grow large or numerous enough to put pressure on nearby organs or blood vessels. 

What are the symptoms of uterine fibroids?

While some women can have uterine fibroids for many years with no symptoms at all, other women experience heavy or irregular menstrual bleeding and sometimes severe pain and cramps. Symptoms include:

  • Constant, dull or aching pain in the pelvic area
  • Heavy or prolonged periods and spotting between periods
  • Difficulty emptying your bladder or constipation (due to the fibroids putting pressure on nearby organs)
  • Anemia

What causes uterine fibroids?

Unfortunately, uterine fibroids are not well-understood. There is not a clear cause, but if you meet certain risk factors, you may have an increased likelihood of developing uterine fibroids:

  • Black women are more likely to develop uterine fibroids than other racial groups. They are also more likely to develop severe symptoms.
  • If any of your close relatives had uterine fibroids, you have an increased risk of developing fibroids.
  • Onset of menarche (first period) at an early age may increase your likelihood of developing fibroids.
  • Other lifestyle and dietary factors may also play a role.

What are the complications of uterine fibroids?

Uncomfortable symptoms are the primary issue with uterine fibroids, however, other complications may include:

  • Anemia, caused by heavy blood loss
  • Issues with emptying your bladder or bowels
  • Infertility, pregnancy loss or other pregnancy complications – many women with fibroids do not experience these issues, but they can occur if fibroids are particularly large or numerous

Diagnosing & treating uterine fibroids

How are uterine fibroids diagnosed?

Diagnosing uterine fibroids is typically an easy, in-office procedure.

  • Ultrasound – An ultrasound is an easy diagnostic procedure done with a device that moves over your abdomen or is placed inside your vagina to take images of the uterus.
  • Lab testing – Blood tests may be ordered to rule out any other causes for your symptoms and determine if you are at risk for anemia.

How are uterine fibroids treated?

Medication

This is typically used to treat symptoms, like pain, but medication cannot truly treat or cure uterine fibroids.

Hormonal contraceptives

Hormonal pills, implants or IUDs can help manage heavy or irregular bleeding caused by uterine fibroids.

Myomectomy

A myomectomy is the surgical removal of uterine fibroids. During a myomectomy, your doctor will remove your fibroids and leave the uterus intact.

Hysteroscopic myomectomy

In this minimally invasive procedure, a camera is inserted through the vagina and into the uterine cavity. This procedure can be done to remove endometrial polyps or fibroids that are growing into the lining of the uterus.

Acessa

This procedure is done through two small abdominal incisions and controlled heat generated through radiofrequency. The goal is to shrink and soften the uterine fibroids, reducing symptoms and offering alternative treatment options to women considering fibroid removal surgery or hysterectomy. It is a minimally invasive, same-day treatment.

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Hysterectomy

For some women, their symptoms are severe enough that a hysterectomy is the preferred option to prevent fibroid growth. Hysterectomy does have side effects, especially for women of child-bearing age, including the inability to have children and early menopause (unless the ovaries can be preserved in the surgery.) Your NGPG provider will discuss the pros and cons of hysterectomy with you.

Why choose NGPG Gynecology?

NGPG is home to experienced providers you can trust. With four convenient locations across northeast Georgia, NGPG provides easy access and scheduling. Our approach to gynecologic services always centers care on the patient and family.

If surgery is necessary, we perfom our surgeries with state-of-the-art technology at Northeast Georgia Medical Center, providing our patients access to minimally-invasive laproscopic and robotic surgery options. By offering these options, we can minimize your stay in the hospital, shorten recovery times and reduce pain from surgery. NGMC Gainesville is the first hospital in Georgia to have received accreditation from the SRC as a Center of Excellence in minimally invasive gynecology. 

Request an appointment

To request an appointment or to ask questions regarding our gynecologic services, treatments and office locations, please complete our online form or call one of our office locations.