In retrospect, 2016 was an eye opener to how younger women are coming up with fibroid. I met more than 15 younger women age 21- 25 years with a particular kind of fibroid from the size of an ant to that of a large mass. Fibroid development is no longer determined by age and any lady can be diagnosed with fibroid. Fibroids are naturally harmless but could cause a lot of discomfort and psychological trauma.

Fibroid is commonly found in the uterus of women of child bearing age (20,30 and 40) years which is meant to shrink after menopause but at times might not shrink.

Fibroids are the most frequently seen tumors of the female reproductive system. An estimate was given earlier that between 20-50% of women of reproductive age have fibroids. Some are large enough to be seen during physical examination while some are so tiny at the beginning of their developmental stages.

Virtually all fibroids are noncancerous tumors which are usually firm, compact made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue that develop in the uterus. We all don’t know the cause of fibroid but it is known that some muscle cells in the uterus multiply rapidly because of the influence of oestrogen.

Many women have uterine fibroids sometime during their lives. But most women don’t know they have uterine fibroids because they often cause no symptoms. Your doctor may discover fibroids incidentally during a pelvic examination or prenatal ultrasound. Most women possibly to have fibroid are those approaching menopause simply due to high exposure to estrogen. You can have a single fibroid or multiple ones. In extreme cases, multiple fibroids can expand the uterus so much that it reaches the rib cage.

There are different types of fibroids which are

Intramural fibroid: This is the most common type of fibroid and grows inside the uterus wall. It can become symptomatic when it enlarges the uterus

Subserous fibroid: it develops on the outer wall of the uterus and usually unnoticed until they become so big that they can press on other organs surrounding the uterus like the bladder and rectum.

Submucosal : it can develop just under the lining of the uterine cavity, these are the fibroid that have the most effect on heavy menstrual bleeding and the ones that can cause problems with fertility and miscarriage.

The other types are pedunculated fibroid,inter ligamentous and parasitic fibroid.

Fibroids often times show no symptoms or just very mild symptoms but some have severe symptoms such as

Pain during sex

Frequent urination

Heavy flow

Prolonged menstrual periods

Abnormal bleeding between menstrual periods. Other women exhibit different symptoms such as fever, firm mass often located near the middle of the pelvis and aneamia .

The main cause of fibroid is unknown but ideally it is due to genetic abnormalities, alteration in growth factor, and tissue response to injury, family history and race. In terms of race it shows that women of African descent are two to three times likeier to develop fibroids than women of other races. Early pregnancy decreases the possibility that fibroids will develop. Other factors are having first menstrual period prior to age 10, consumption of beer and uterine infections.

In summary you should remember the following tips

Fibroid may cause infertility and miscarriage

Fibroid can develop at any age

Uterine infections can cause spontaneous formation of fibroid

Fibroid is non cancerous but a form of cancer which can never become cancerous

Fibroid is common in women of African descent

Fibroid cannot lead to death but could causes pain and psychological trauma.

It can make the stomach of a woman look so big with the feeling of being pregnant.

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