Are uterine fibroids serious?

Fibroids can cause significant symptoms most notably heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, and increased urinary frequency. The symptoms in some women can be severe enough to cause them to go to the Emergency Room for treatment. The heavy bleeding can cause profound anemia which can necessitate either an intravenous infusion of iron or occasionally a blood transfusion.

Most of the time, uterine fibroids aren't serious and don't require any treatment. However, in some cases, they may cause more severe symptoms like heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, or problems with urination and constipation. In those cases, treatment may be necessary, but it's usually treatable without removing the entire uterus. Uncommonly, hysterectomy may be required, which is a relatively serious procedure that makes a woman unable to have children.

Continue Learning about Uterine Fibroids

Uterine Fibroids

If you have uterine fibroids, you may never even notice that they are there. Ranging from the size of a small seed to grapefruit-sized, fibroids are tumors on the uterus that rarely cause harm. Some women have true discomfort with ...

fibroids, including pain in the abdomen or low back, or pain during sex. Sometimes, uterine fibroids can cause miscarriage, preterm labor, or even lead to infertility. Women in their 40s and 50s, women of African-American descent and women that are overweight are at higher risk of developing fibroids, although an estimated 20-80% of women will have them at some point before they turn 50. If your doctor notices fibroids during an ultrasound or pelvic exam, he or she may want to treat them with medication or surgery.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.