Do you have fibroids? Or do you suspect that you might have fibroids? Find out the 7 things you must know about fibroids if you’re trying to conceive.
1. What Are Fibroids?
Fibroids (also known as leiomyoma or myoma) are non-cancerous growths that are found in or on the womb (uterus).
2. What Are The Different Types Of Fibroids?
There are different types and sizes of fibroids, both of these factors determine if the fibroid will create problems with getting pregnant.
- Submucosal fibroid – Submucosal fibroids are found on the inner wall of the womb and grow from the womb lining (endometrium). Sometimes they develop a stalk (peduncle) and are known as pedunculated. Only 10% of fibroids are submucosal.
- Intramural fibroid – Intramural fibroids grow within the muscle wall of the womb.
- Subserosal fibroid – A subserosal fibroid are on the outside womb wall, underneath the peritoneum. These are the most common fibroids.
- Sizes – can range from the size of a pea to a watermelon.
3. Why Do Women Get Fibroids?
It is not fully understood why fibroids develop, but it is thoughts that contributing factors include:
- Low vitamin D.
- Excess oestrogen.
4. Who Is At Risk Of Getting Fibroids?
- Age – Fibroids are very common with 1 in 3 women having fibroids, normally between the ages of 30 and 50.
- Ethnicity – Women of colour are 2 to 3 times more likely to get fibroids, experiencing bigger fibroids and getting them at a younger age. This could be due to low vitamin D, but it is still not fully understood.
- Weight – Women who are overweight or have oestrogen dominance are also more likely to get fibroids because of the increased levels of oestrogen.
- Increased oestrogen – anything that exposes you to more oestrogen can make you more at risk of developing fibroids, such as taking the pill or drinking alcohol.
- Family history – If fibroids run in your family then you are more likely to have them too. If your mother had fibroids, then you are three times more likely to have them.
5. What Symptoms Do You Get From Fibroids?
Fibroid symptoms are similar to the symptoms of endometriosis.
- Long and heavy periods.
- Anaemic – dizzy, tired and short of breath.
- Bleeding between periods.
- Pelvic pain and pressure – bloating or swelling.
- Pain during intercourse.
- Low back pain.
- Frequent urination.
6. How Are Fibroids Diagnosed?
- Pelvic exam.
7. Can You Still Get Pregnant With Fibroids?
The larger the fibroid, the more problems it will cause. Small fibroids (the size of a pea) are often unnoticed, have no symptoms, don’t need treating and don’t stop you from getting pregnant. Larger fibroid could be stopping you from getting pregnant or be causing you to have miscarriages.
- Pregnancy – Large subserosal fibroids (more than 6cm) growing on the outside of the womb can push against the fallopian tubes and block the egg from reaching the sperm.
- Implantation – Submucosal fibroids that grow into the womb make it more difficult for the embryo to implant. The more fibroids and the bigger they are, the harder it is for the embryo to implant.
- Miscarriage – Fibroids that are larger than 5cm can cause problems during pregnancy because they push against blood vessels and can prevent the baby from developing properly.
I’d love to hear from you. Let me know if you’ve got fibroids and if you’ve decided to manage them naturally or go for surgery.Warmest wishes,Join the free Fertility Heroes Facebook group. In our private Facebook group you'll get fertility tips, research and inspiration. Only the women in the group will know you've joined and see your posts. 2. Hang out in Clubhouse in the Fertility Club and the Fertile Mindset Club for fertility strategies, support and community. 3. Apply for a free Fertility Analysis Session to work out what is missing from your fertility puzzle and what to do about it. 4. Join the Plan Yourself Pregnant Membership. Get customised support to work out why you're not pregnant and get your personal plan to optimise your fertility, balance your hormones, improve your womb lining and increase your egg quality.
NHS (Retrieved 10th November 2020). Fibroids. Source: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/fibroids/
The British Fibroid Trust (Retrieved 12th November 2020) What Is Fibroid? Source: http://www.britishfibroidtrust.org.uk
The Royal College Of Obstetricians And Gynaecologists (Retrieved on 10th November 2020) Fibroids. Source: https://www.rcog.org.uk/en/patients/fertility/female-problems/fibroids/