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Somerset Constructive & Reconstructive Surgery

Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgeons & OBGYNs located in Warren, NJ

Fibroids occur in as many as 80% of women, but many never have symptoms and don’t even know or realize they have them. These noncancerous growths in the uterus can cause problems in some women, and board-certified OB/GYN Shilpa Clott, MD, at Somerset Women’s Care in Warren, New Jersey, can help. If you have symptoms that suggest fibroids, call her office or schedule online to receive evaluation and management.

Fibroids Q & A

What are fibroids?

Fibroids are benign growths that form in the wall of your uterus. They vary in size; some are as small as a seed and others can grow as large as a grapefruit. You can have several fibroids or just one, and often, you don’t even know you have them.

What symptoms suggest fibroids?

Fibroids don’t always cause symptoms. If you do experience them, they may include:

  • Heavy menstrual flow
  • Pressure on the bowel or bladder
  • Enlarged abdomen
  • Frequent urination
  • Pain during sex
  • Lower back pain
  • Miscarriage or infertility

The severity of these symptoms varies. An ultrasound may be ordered to identify the exact location, number, and size of any fibroids.

What causes fibroids to develop?

Researchers aren’t exactly sure why women develop fibroids but some women are definitely at a higher risk than others. This may be due to:

  • Age - most women who develop fibroids are 30-50 years old
  • Family history - many women who develop fibroids have close relatives with the condition
  • Obesity - overweight women are up to three times more likely to develop fibroids
  • Ethnicity - African-American women are at a higher risk for fibroids than others

Having one or more of these factors increases your risk of fibroids, but it doesn’t mean you’ll for sure develop them.

How are fibroids treated?

Treatment for your fibroids depends on your symptoms. If fibroids are identified during a routine pelvic exam or ultrasound for another complaint, Dr. Clott may recommend regular monitoring in case they become symptomatic. In most cases, fibroids don’t require any special care.

If you have fibroids causing symptoms that are hard to tolerate, you may benefit from different interventions. These include:

  • Low-dose birth control pills
  • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists to help shrink the tumor
  • Minimally invasive surgery to remove the growth

Fibroids are the No. 1 reason women get a hysterectomy. If you want to preserve your uterus, however, Dr. Clott will recommend a myomectomy to remove the tumor without affecting your ability to have children.

If you have symptoms that suggest fibroids, call Somerset Women’s Care or book an appointment online soon. Early treatment prevents an escalation of symptoms.