Uterine fibroids* are benign (non-cancerous) tumors occurring in at least one quarter of all women.1 They can grow underneath the uterine lining, inside the uterine wall or outside the uterus. Many women don't feel any symptoms with uterine tumors or fibroids. But for others, these fibroids can cause excessive menstrual bleeding (also called menorrhagia), abnormal periods, uterine bleeding, pain, discomfort, frequent urination and infertility. The following diagram depicts different types of fibroids that can occur.
Surgical treatment for uterine tumors most often involves the surgeon removing the entire uterus via hysterectomy. While hysterectomy is a proven way to resolve fibroids, it may not be the best treatment for every woman.
If you have the desire to preserve your uterus but not necessarily fertility, there are a number of prescription drug treatments that can help to stop continued fibroid growth or even shrink them. If you hope to later become pregnant, you may want to consider alternatives to hysterectomy like myomectomy. Myomectomy is a uterine-preserving procedure performed to remove uterine fibroids. Common treatment options for uterine fibroids include:
*Uterine fibroids are also called fibroids, uterine tumors, leiomyomata (singular: leiomyoma) and myomas or myomata (singular: myoma)
1. Newbold RR, DiAugustine RP, Risinger JI, Everitt JI, Walmer DK, Parrott EC, Dixon D. Advances in Uterine Leiomyoma Research: Conference Overview, Summary, and Future Research Recommendations. Environ Health Perspect. 2000 Oct;108 Suppl 5:769-73. Review.
While clinical studies support the effectiveness of the da Vinci ® System when used in minimally invasive surgery, individual results may vary. Surgery with the da Vinci ® Surgical System may not be appropriate for every individual. Always ask your doctor about all treatment options, as well as their risks and benefits.
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