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What are the characteristics of fibroids?

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Quick Answer

Fibroids are noncancerous growths extending from the uterine muscular tissue, according to WebMD. They sometimes appear singly but also occur in multiple growths, and they vary widely in size. By the age of 50, between 70 and 80 percent of all women develop fibroids.

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Full Answer

Although all fibroid tumors result from anomalous amalgamation of muscle cells, they come in three different categories, depending on their location. Subserol fibroids run from the wall of the uterus into the pelvic cavity, intramural fibroids are inside the uterine wall, and submucosal fibroids are beneath the lining of the uterus, as stated by WebMD.

Symptoms from fibroids vary widely from one woman to the next. Some encounter no symptoms at all, while others experience such signs as heavy menstrual periods with extended bleeding, pain in the pelvis and/or abdomen, increase in urination, and swelling, reports WebMD.

The treatment options depend on the fibroid's location, the number and size of the growths, the age of the patient and her possibility of having children. Historically, the treatment for fibroid tumors has involved a hysterectomy. For women still interested in having children or avoiding other effects of hysterectomy, less invasive treatments have become available, as noted by WebMD.

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