Fibroid tumors are round and vary from fractions of an inch in diameter to several inches, reports WebMD.com. They develop when muscle cells form fibrous masses inside the uterus. They rest under the uterine lining, between the uterine wall muscles or run from the uterine wall into the pelvic area.
Women are most likely to develop fibroids between the ages of 30 and 40, and African-American women are more likely to get them than members of any other ethnic group. As of 2015, researchers have identified one genetic link, which means that fibroids possibly occur in families. The symptoms range from no signs in some women to such problems as abdominal or pelvic pain, increased urination, swelling, extended bleeding and heavy menstrual periods, according to WebMD.com.
The proper treatment for a fibroid tumor depends on the location, the number of fibroids, and the size, as well as the potential that the patient still has to have children. Traditionally, the typical treatment for fibroids has been hysterectomy, but as of 2015, less-invasive treatments are options as well. Unfortunately, hysterectomies are still done more often than necessary, to the tune that 76 percent of hysterectomies performed turn out to be unnecessary per the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, reports WebMD.com.