Fibroids in Leesburg
Obstetrics & Gynecology located in Centreville, VA & Leesburg, VA
Fibroids are a highly prevalent condition among women of child-bearing age. These growths inside the uterus are usually not life-threatening, but the symptoms they cause can be highly disrupting and painful. As such, being diagnosed with fibroids for the first time can be scary. Fortunately, our caring and compassionate gynecologists at Midatlantic OBGYN can help you through this diagnosis and explain your treatment options. If you are looking for treatment for fibroids in Leesburg, speak a member of our team today.
What Are Fibroids?
Fibroids are non-cancerous growths of muscle or connective tissue in, on, or around the uterus. They can be a single nodule or appear in clusters. Additionally, they can range in size from a strawberry seed to a melon. These tumors also sometimes grow outward from the uterus on stalks. Our Leesburg and Centreville gynecologists can typically diagnose fibroids using ultrasound imaging.
While the cause of these tumors is unclear, multiple factors likely contribute, including genetics, stress exposure, and diet. Pregnancy and contraceptives seem to reduce the risk of fibroids, and they tend to shrink in size after menopause.
How Fibroids Can Affect Health and Well-Being
While many women may never know that they have fibroids, others may experience serious effects. For those who do experience symptoms, these can range from mild to debilitating. Some of the more common symptoms include heavy and prolonged periods, pain or "fullness" feelings in the pelvic region, bleeding in between periods, and pain during sexual intercourse.
Although fibroids are generally not immediately dangerous to women in Leesburg and Centreville, the symptoms they cause can be a significant drain on energy and mental health. Sometimes the excessive bleeding triggered by fibroids can cause anemia, or low blood iron, leading to fatigue and weakness. Chronic or severe pain can also impact a person's work and family life as well.
Fibroids may impact fertility and pregnancy. If a growth is blocking the entrance to the uterus or the fallopian tubes, this can make it difficult or impossible to become pregnant. These growths can also increase the risk of complications such as miscarriage, preterm birth, or postpartum hemorrhage.
Treatment Options in Leesburg for Fibroids
There is no universal treatment approach for fibroids because symptoms and presentation vary so widely. Some people never experience symptoms and can employ a "watchful waiting" approach in which they and their doctor monitor the situation and otherwise do nothing. For others, surgery is the best choice. As such, there is a wide range of fibroid treatment options available in Leesburg:
- Medication: Medications to treat fibroids can include over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs for pain, contraceptives like the pill or an IUD, hormonal treatments to lower estrogen levels, or a drug called leuprolide acetate which has been known to shrink the size of fibroids.
- Focused ultrasound surgery (FUS): Also called focused ultrasound ablation, this treatment uses a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine to target these growths with high-energy sound waves. The sound waves create heat that can help break down fibroid tissue.
- Uterine artery embolization (UAE): This procedure injects small blocking agents into the uterine arteries to cut off blood flow to fibroids, eventually causing them to shrink and dissolve.
- Myomectomy: This is a surgery to remove the fibroids but leave the uterus intact. It can be performed with an open abdominal incision or laparoscopically.
- Hysterectomy: The surgical removal of the uterus; this is the only permanent cure for fibroids. People who want to become pregnant in the future should try other treatments first.
Reach Out to a Leesburg OBGYN to Discuss Fibroid Treatment
No two cases of fibroids are alike. To find out more about options for treating painful fibroids in Leesburg or Centreville, schedule a consultation at the Midatlantic OBGYN office nearest you. Our specialists could review your case and determine the best treatment options for you.