The 5 Ws of Fibroids

Symptoms of fibroid tumors

If you don’t know a thing about uterine fibroids, now is as good of a time as ever to learn. Here’s what you need to know.

What? Where? Uterine fibroids are tumors that develop in the wall of the uterus. Sometimes, they’re as small as apple seeds, and other times, they can grow as large as soft balls, or even cantaloupes. In the former cases, women may not even notice any of the signs and symptoms of fibroids. In the latter, the symptoms of fibroid cysts can significantly reduce women’s quality of life.

Who? When? About 30% of women will develop fibroids by the age of 35, and at least 70% of women develop fibroids by the age of 50. Some women, however, are more at risk of developing fibroids than others. Fibroids are more prevalent amongst minority groups than caucasians, and particularly more prevalent around the African-American community. They’re also more common amongst women who are overweight, and who have family histories of fibroids.

Why? How? Unfortunately, doctors are still unsure what exactly causes fibroids. However, research has shown what some risk factors are, as previously mentioned. In addition to ethnicity, weight, and family history, a woman is at a higher risk of developing fibroids if she eats a lot of red meat. At the same, eating a lot of leafy greens has been shown to protect women from developing fibroids.

Luckily, there are a myriad of different uterine fibroid treatments that can help these women. There are medicinal fibroid treatments that can help women with small tumors alleviate their minor symptoms. More problematic fibroids can be taken care of by non-invasive procedures, which can effectively eliminate all of the fibroids without damaging any of the surrounding tissues. If the fibroids are too large, and/or too many, there is also uterine fibroid surgery that can resolve the issue.

If you have any questions about what fibroids are, who gets them, when they get them, where they get them, why they get them, and how, feel free to share in the comments.

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