The Different Types Of Fibroids
The different types of fibroids are based on their location within the uterus and pelvis.
Fibroids are benign smooth muscle growths from the uterus. They are
the most common types of benign pelvic tumors in menstruating women.
Despite the common usage of the word types
to describe the different location of fibroids, it is important to
remember that there is really just one type of fibroid which may be of
different sizes and be found at different location.
fibroids are similar in their makeup: all are made of abnormal uterus
muscle cells growing in a tight bundle or mass.
Characteristics Of Fibroids
There are three major characteristics of fibroid growths that occur in any woman.
- Types of Fibroids. The different types are based on the location of the tumor within the uterus. The
uterus has three layers- an outer layer called the perimetrium or
serous layer, a middle layer made of smooth muscle called the myometrium
and an inner layer called the endometrium.With respect to locations(
see image above), fibroids can be classified as A. Myometrial (intramural) fibroids are within the muscular wall of the uterus. B. Submucosal fibroids
grow just under the interior surface of the uterus, and may protrude
into the uterus. These are the type of fibroids that often cause
abnormal uterine bleeding such as heavy or prolonged menstruation
because they directly affect the endometrium. The endometrium is the
layer of the uterus that is shed during menses. C. Subserosal fibroids
grow on the outside wall of the uterus. This type is often responsible
for pressure symptoms around surrounding structures like the bladder in
front and the rectum behind. D. Pedunculated
fibroids. These usually grow outside of the uterus but remain connected
to it by a base or stalk like a lollipop attached to the uterus.There
may be one or more types present in a single woman. For example a woman
be have subserosal and myometrial fibroids at the same time.
- Fibroid Size. Fibroids
vary greatly in their sizes within the uterus. They may range from
almost invisible to very large tumors of about 7 to 10 cm. In fact
fibroids may be so large that they cause the abdomen to swell like
pregnancy. It has been reported how some women have had large fibroids
and thought they were pregnant!
- Number of fibroids. There
might be a single fibroid or many of them. Some women may have up to
about 10 fibroids of different sizes and locations within the uterus.
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