Uterine Fibroid Tumors

Fibroids are overgrowths of muscle and connective tissue in the wall of the uterus. They may be described as solid, ball-like, smooth muscle tumors. Fibroids are usually benign, or non-cancerous, tumors but they can vary greatly in size, number and location, causing various problems depending on the situation.

What Are Uterine Fibroid Tumors

Fibroids are non-cancerous tumors within the wall of the uterus. They are composed of smooth muscle cells which constitute "fibrous" tissue and come in all sizes. Depending on their size and location they can be troublesome and dangerous.

Symptoms of Uterine Fibroid Tumors

Fibroids can cause pain, put pressure on organs adjacent to the uterus (bladder, bowel) cause constipation and obstructions, discharge, hemorrhage, anemia, abnormal vaginal bleeding, infertility and complications during pregnancy. The most common and frightening symptom of fibroids is heavy bleeding. This can suggest that the problem is more serious than it appears.

Who Uterine Fibroid Tumors Affect

If you have fibroids, you are not alone: Fibroid tumors are found in 40% of women between the ages of 35 and 55. Fibroids affect 50% of African-American women, although the reasons for this are still not clear.

Causes of Uterine Fibroid Tumors

Though the specific causes of fibroids are unknown, it is known that they are estrogen dependent, and hormone levels can affect their rate of growth