The same assumption about endometriosis and menopause –women experience a lessening of symptoms once menopause begins – also holds true for fibroids. And a menopause-centric website says that assumption may not ring true.
Many women have been told that fibroids will go away after menopause.
That’s misleading, says the website RedHotMamas.org.
While fibroids may shrink some and cause fewer symptoms for some women, they can still be problematic for many women. Even without monthly periods, fibroids can still make going to the bathroom difficult, cause pain in the lower back and bleeding may still occur, depending on their location.
The earlier fibroids are detected, the better it is for the patient to consider her options, such has having a myomectomy – a procedure in which the fibroid removed is while keeping the uterus – if she is interested in fertility.
To the contrary, adopting a “watch and wait” stance – e.g., if fibroids aren’t causing difficulty, don’t need to do anything – can be concerning because fibroids can continue to grow and also become harder to remove.
While some shrinkage can happen after menopause, a fibroid won’t shrink into nothingness.
RedHotMamas.org notes that the reduction of a 10 centimeter fibroid will not even be half of its size or weight. Also, fibroids can calcify over time, making them harder to remove via a laparoscopic procedure.
The symptoms of fibroids remain the same regardless of a woman’s age when they occur. Symptoms include an enlarged abdomen, anemia, fatigue, pain during sex, pain in the back of the legs, pelvic pain, lower back pain, and pressure in the pelvic region, bladder or bowels, Medical News Today reported. These growths are almost always noncancerous.
A healthcare provider will develop a treatment plan for fibroids based on the patient, so it is vital that you clearly state what you want to happen concerning the fibroids. Again, the course of action can range from a “watch and wait” approach, to medication to surgical procedures, including a hysterectomy.
Medical News Today stressed the importance of a woman who is experiencing vaginal bleeding or other symptoms of fibroids after menopause to see her healthcare provider. Vaginal bleeding after menopause needs to be evaluated to make sure that there is not a more serious cause.