Fibroids After Menopause
Fibroids after menopause are not uncommon.
The general trend is that fibroids usually regress after the menopause.
Fibroids are benign uterine tumors that grow from the smooth muscle wall of the uterus.
Though they are so common, the exact cause of fibroids is not known.
However, it is well known that the female sex hormones estrogen and progesterone play important roles in the growth of these tumors.
There are two common scenarios that prove this
- The occurrence of fibroids only during the menstruation years and usually rarely before 20 years.
- The regression of these tumors after the menopause when the female hormones drop.
Fibroid Changes After Menopause
The common understanding is that menopause causes shrinking of fibroids. Yes, the appropriate description of fibroids that occur after menopause is that they shrink in size.. They do not necessarily disappear.
That does not apply to all the different types and sizes of tumors.
Fibroids usually shrink substantially and nay minimal symptoms may be absent or significantly reduced. Most women usually understand this “postmenopausal shrinking” as meaning complete disappearance of the tumor. Therefore many women are often taken off guard when they hear of some few women who are diagnosed with fibroids or worse still undergo some sort of treatment for fibroids after menopause.
The course of fibroids after the menopause is determine by at least two major factors
- The size of the fibroids just before menopause
Very large tumors which were not causing symptoms before menopause or not removed by surgery for whatever reason might not shrink to a small insignificant size. These large tumors may cause symptoms after menopause, especially postmenopause bleeding.
- The use of estrogen replacement therapy Women who use estrogen replacement therapy for some menopause symptoms may experience growth of fibroids and increase symptoms.
Symptoms And Treatment
Fibroids that do not shrink to a insignificant size after menopause may cause symptoms in some women. This is not very common though since in most women, the fibroids shrink and do not cause symptoms.
Many women who have fibroids in an age closer to menopause often opt to wait for menopause to shrink the fibroids. In such cases, the fibroids are usually monitored closely and removed if any complications developed such as rapid growth.
Some symptoms may include postmenopausal bleeding, frequent urination and lower abdominal pain.
Treatment is often by surgical options for most women.
Always see your doctor if you have postmenopausal bleeding or any other symptom that you think might be suggestive of fibroids.
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