Women’s health – week 50: Uterine Fibroids


tacuin womenFor the Office of Research on Women’s Health

Uterine fibroids 

Uterine fibroids are very common in women of childbearing age. Fibroids are noncancerous tumors that grow within the wall of the uterus.

Fibroids may grow as a single tumor or in clusters. A single fibroid can be less than one inch in size or can grow to eight inches across or more.

Most fibroids grow within the wall of the uterus.

Fibroids are described based on where they grow:

  • Submucosal fibroids grow just underneath the uterine lining.
  • Intramural fibroids grow in the middle of the wall of the uterus.
  • Subserosal fibroids grow toward the outside of the wall of the uterus.
  • Penduculated fibroids grow developing stalks and hang down attached either inside or outside the uterus.
  • Cervical fibroids grow in the wall of the cervix.

ORWH_Fibroids 070109Many women do not have any symptoms with uterine fibroids. But fibroids can cause the following:

  • Heavy bleeding or painful periods.
  • Bleeding between periods.
  • Feeling full in the lower abdomen – sometimes called pelvic pressure.
Fibroids may cause reproductive problems, such as infertility, multiple miscarriages, and early onset of labor during pregnancy.

for more information: for more information: www.nichd.nih.gov