Pelvic pain can be caused by uterine fibroids, a common women’s health condition. Fibroids are among the top causes of pelvic pain and heavy menstrual bleeding
At Westover Hills Women’s Health, our board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist, Houmam Al-Hakeem, MD, has extensive expertise diagnosing and treating uterine fibroids.
Read on to learn more about this condition, which affects many women in their 30s and 40s.
Uterine fibroids are masses that grow within the walls of a woman’s uterus. Fibroids, which are also known as leiomyomas or myomas, are typically benign, or non-cancerous.
The size and number of fibroids can vary. You may have one fibroid or many, and they may be as tiny as an apple seed or as large as a grapefruit.
Uterine fibroids can grow anywhere in or on your uterus: In its muscular walls, on its outer surface, or within its internal space. Fibroids can even grow at the end of stalk-like structures within your uterus.
Fibroids may cause a wide range of symptoms or no symptoms at all. One of the most common symptoms is pelvic pain. Women with symptomatic fibroids may feel above-average menstrual cramping during their periods, Pain during sexual intercourse, as well as pelvic discomfort and “heaviness”. Fibroid pain may radiate pain into your abdomen and even your lower back.
In addition to pain, you may also experience one or more of these signs or symptoms:
If Dr. Al-Hakeem suspects that you have uterine fibroids, he uses ultrasound, X-ray, or other types of tests to check for them. Once he has a clear understanding of your condition, he creates a personalized treatment plan for you.
In some cases, especially in women who are close to menopause, Dr. Al-Hakeem may suggest treating the symptoms with over-the-counter pain relievers and other symptom-relief medications since fibroids often shrink on their own after menopause.
When fibroids require removal, Dr. Al-Hakeem may recommend minimally invasive fibroid removal using the Acessa™ procedure. This procedure employs a technology known as radiofrequency ablation, which uses heat to destroy fibroids.
The Acessa procedure is performed laparoscopically through two tiny incisions in your abdomen. Heat energy eliminates the fibroid without damaging your uterus.
Performing this procedure laparoscopically, sometimes with robotic assistance, results in less pain and bleeding and a far shorter recuperation than with traditional open abdominal surgery.
Don’t wait any longer to have pelvic pain, heavy bleeding, and other gynecologic symptoms evaluated. To schedule an appointment for an examination at one of our two San Antonio, Texas, offices, call us today or use our online tool.