Definition - What does Myomatous Uterus mean?
A myomatous uterus is a uterus affected by non-cancerous growths called myomas or otherwise known as uterine fibroids. Fibroids may change the shape, structure, and integrity of the uterine cavity. Fibroids can be both a symptom and a cause of infertility, including in vitro fertilization (IVF) failure and miscarriage. Fibroids may also cause other health complications and may require treatment in order to conceive or carry a pregnancy to term.
FertilitySmarts explains Myomatous Uterus
Fibroids are a common health problem for women of childbearing age. Many women with fibroids experience no symptoms. However, some fibroids in certain locations, quantities, or size may incur:
- Abnormal menstruation
- Longer, heavier menstruation
- Severe menstrual cramping
- Bleeding in between periods
- Frequent urination
- Abdominal pain or swelling
There are multiple types of fibroids, categorized by location of growth within the layers of the uterine muscle.
- Subserosal fibroids are the most common and occur in the outer wall of the uterus
- Intramural fibroids are somewhat common and occur in the middle, muscular layer of the uterus
- Submucosal fibroids are rare and protrude into the uterine cavity
Typically, fibroid size can range from the size of a small coin to a large melon. However, pregnancy is known to exacerbate the growth of fibroids, as a result of high levels of hormones. Consequently, fibroids can responsible for implantation failure, miscarriage, recurrent miscarriage, and inability to carry a pregnancy full term. There are several ways fibroids induce infertility or endanger pregnancy:
- Restrict blood flow to the uterus, damaging the endometrial layer and challenging implantation
- Changing the shape of the uterine cavity
- Interfering with sperm passing through the cervix
- Encroach on fetus’ growing space
- Disrupt fetal positioning
Fibroid treatment is based on the symptoms and complications of the growths. Treatment falls into two categories: medication or surgery.
Medication used to treat fibroids includes:
- Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists
- Laparoscopic myomectomy
- Open myomectomy
- Uterine fibroid embolization
- MR guided focused ultrasound