Pedunculated Fibroid

Definition - What does Pedunculated Fibroid mean?

A pedunculated fibroid is a non-cancerous growth that forms on the end of a stalk on either the outer or inner wall of the uterus. While many pedunculated fibroids may not cause any symptoms, based on the size and location of the fibroid, some symptoms may include heavy menstrual bleeding, painful menstrual cycles, or constipation.

A woman may experience trouble with fertility if a large pedunculated fibroid occupies too much area in the uterus where the fetus would normally develop or blocks the passageway from the fallopian tubes to the uterus. Fibroids can be detected by transvaginal or abdominal ultrasound and large fibroids may be felt on physical examination. Pedunculated fibroids may be surgically removed however surgical scarring may also affect fertility.

FertilitySmarts explains Pedunculated Fibroid

Fibroids in general, are masses of muscle cells and connective tissue that form in and around the uterus. A pedunculated fibroid is one type of fibroid that attaches to the inner or outer wall of the uterus via a stalk. When inside the uterus the pedunculated fibroid can project into the cavity of the uterus and when attached to the outer wall of the uterus, can project into the abdomen. Although the exact cause of the development of fibroids is unknown, it is estimated that 40-80% of all women have fibroids. It is believed there are several contributing factors to fibroid development including genetic factors and hormonal fluctuations.

Pedunculated fibroids can cause sudden and severe pain. Because they are connected to the uterus via a stalk, this stalk may become twisted and stop blood flow to the fibroid. Lack of blood to the fibroid tissue can cause severe pain. Pain may also occur during menstrual cycles along with heavy bleeding. In a woman experiencing symptoms, transvaginal or abdominal ultrasound is used to definitively diagnose fibroids and to estimate any effects the fibroid may have on fertility or pregnancy based on location.

It is estimated that only 1 to 2% of infertility cases are caused by fibroids. Because fibroids are generally benign it is not mandatory to treat them unless they are causing pain or other symptoms, issues with fertility, or their location would negatively affect pregnancy. Pedunculated fibroids can generally be removed surgically by cutting the stalk that attaches it to the uterus.

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