Fibroids can cause pain, heavy bleeding, and fertility problems in women who suffer from them. As a top-rated gynecologist in New York City, Dr. Goltyapina is a fibroids specialist, using state-of-the-art techniques at Broadway Gynecology located in the city’s Financial District.

What are fibroids?

Fibroids are benign (non-cancerous) growths of muscular fibers that can range in size from very small to as large as a melon. Although the process involved in the development and growth fibroids is not entirely understood, hormonal fluctuations appear to play a pivotal role – in fact, for most women, fibroids tend to shrink once a woman enters menopause. Women with a family history of fibroids are more likely to develop the growths themselves.

What symptoms are associated with fibroids?

Depending on their size and other factors, fibroids can cause a host of symptoms like:

  • irregular or very heavy periods
  • spotting or bleeding between periods
  • very painful periods
  • pelvic pressure or discomfort
  • urinary incontinence or the need to urinate frequently

Small fibroids may cause no symptoms at all.

Can I get pregnant if I have fibroids?

Fibroids frequently cause irregular bleeding which can make it more difficult for an egg to be fertilized. Also, although conception may take place while fibroids are present, if the fibroids grow during pregnancy, they can cause complications. For that reason, women who have fibroids or a history of fibroids will probably need to be closely monitored throughout their pregnancy.

What techniques are used to diagnose fibroids?

Many fibroids are found during a pelvic exam followed by an MRI or ultrasound to confirm the diagnosis. In some cases, a minimally-invasive procedure called a hysteroscopy can be performed. This procedure uses a flexible, lighted scope to see inside the uterus so fibroids can be evaluated.

How are fibroids treated?

If a fibroid is not causing symptoms, it may not need treatment. However, when a fibroid is symptomatic, several treatment options are available. One of the most popular options is hormone therapy designed to help shrink the fibroids without the need for surgical intervention.

Minimally-invasive procedures may also be performed to remove the fibroid or to cut off the blood flow so the fibroids are deprived of the blood and nutrients they need to grow. When symptoms are very severe or fibroids are recurrent, a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) may be the best solution.

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