Although fibroid tumors are generally not a cause of concern, women should know the signs and symptoms in order to implement the most appropriate treatment. Some women may not experience any symptom at all while many others may encounter heavy and prolonged bleeding. Fibroid tumors, which are renegade muscle cells within the uterus, can produce one or more of the below symptoms:
Symptoms Of Fibroid Tumors
Depending upon the fibroid size and number, fibroids can produce diverse signs. Submucosal fibroids (which grow into the inner cavity of the uterus) tend to cause prolonged and heavy menstrual bleeding. Women attempting pregnancy may find it difficult to do so successfully with fibroid tumors. Although rare, complications caused by fibroids can interfere with pregnancy and fertility.
Too much menstrual bleeding or extensive bleeding is a common symptom of fibroid tumors. Excessive bleeding can be indicative when you soak through sanitary protection within an hour, and there are blood clots during the heaviest day of flow. Women can also develop anemia which can lead to fatigue and headache.
Pain In Abdomen
Fibroids, especially large ones, can cause abdominal pain. There can be discomfort or bloating in the stomach. Pain can also be experienced in the legs. Large fibroids may cause heaviness in the lower abdomen (or pelvis). The discomfort can be a vague pain instead of a sharp one. There can be difficulty lying face down, bending over or exercising.
Sometimes, fibroids can cause acute pain during its degeneration process. The pain can remain localized and improve spontaneously within few weeks. Although pelvic pain is usually mild, it is persistent and localized. Although uncommon, fibroid tumor may cause severe pain owing to excessive blood supply.
A fibroid can die leaving byproducts which can leak into neighboring tissue. Fever may also be caused, although it is also rare. A hanging fibroid (pedunculated fibroid) can cause pain through twisting and interrupted blood supply.
If fibroids put pressure on the bladder, there can be frequent urination. Additionally, if they press on the rectum, there can be constipation. Fibroids which are (projecting to the) outside of the uterus can lead to urinary and stool related problems.
You may need to wake up several times during the night to empty the bladder. Sometimes, there is inability to urinate despite having a full bladder. Rectal fullness can be experienced with fibroids which makes bowel movement difficult. Although uncommon, fibroids can also lead to a hemorrhoid.
Low back pain can also indicate fibroid tumors although this is not considered a common symptom. When fibroids press against the nerves and muscles of the lower back, they lead to back pain.
A large fibroid on the back of the uterus is more likely to cause back pain as against a small fibroid (within uterine wall). Back pain in women is a common complaint which can arise out of several reasons. Hence, it is required that you also observe other signs (of fibroids) before attributing it to fibroids specifically.
When fibroids grow near to the vagina or cervix, they can cause discomfort during sexual intercourse (known as dyspareunia). You can experience pain in particular positions during sexual act. Sexual discomfort should be observed and reported to your doctor during consultation.