Mills Obstetrics & Gynecology
Victoria Mills, DO
Obstetrics & Gynecology located in Oklahoma City, OK
Uterine fibroids are a common problem that develops in 20-50% of women during their reproductive years. Victoria Mills, DO, at Mills Obstetrics & Gynecology, has extensive experience treating uterine fibroids and helping women make the best decision for their health care needs, whether that means monitoring the fibroids’ growth or removing them with laparoscopic surgery. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Oklahoma City or book an appointment online.
Fibroids Q & A
What are uterine fibroids?
The uterine wall consists of several layers. It's inner lining, the endometrium, nurtures a fertilized egg or, if you’re not pregnant, the lining is shed to become your menstrual period. Just behind the endometrium is a layer of smooth muscles.
Uterine fibroids are growths that develop in the muscles. These growths are not cancerous, but they can grow to be very large, even to the size of a softball.
Fibroids have variable characteristics. Some stay small or grow slowly over the years; others rapidly grow to a large size. You can have one fibroid or multiple fibroids of varying sizes.
What symptoms will I develop if I have fibroids?
If your fibroids are small, you may not have any symptoms. As fibroids grow, however, they cause:
- Heavy menstrual periods
- Long menstrual periods
- Bleeding between periods
- Pelvic pain
- Lower back pain
- Pain during intercourse
- Need to frequently urinate
If you have persistent pelvic pain or abnormal bleeding, schedule an appointment to see Dr. Mills. Although they’re symptoms of benign fibroids, they can also signal other potentially serious gynecological conditions.
How are uterine fibroids treated?
Fibroids won’t go away without treatment, but if you don’t have symptoms, you may not need immediate care because they’re not cancerous. Depending on the location and size of your fibroids, they may not affect your ability to get pregnant.
When your symptoms are severe enough to need treatment, Dr. Mills offers several medical and surgical options. She may prescribe medication to stop fibroid growth. Although one type of medication can shrink existing fibroids, it can only be used for a short time to prevent side effects.
Dr. Mills may recommend one of several surgical interventions to treat fibroids:
- Uterine fibroid embolization: blood supply to fibroids is cut off, which makes them shrink
- Myomectomy: surgical procedure that removes fibroids while leaving your uterus intact
- Hysterectomy: when symptoms are severe and you no longer want to have children, the doctor may remove your uterus
Whenever possible, Dr. Mills performs myomectomies and hysterectomies using minimally invasive or laparoscopic surgery. Since laparoscopic surgery only needs a few small incisions, you have minimal bleeding, less postoperative pain, and a quicker recovery.
Minimally invasive surgery also offers the advantage of little to no scarring, depending on the procedure.
Any time you develop persistent pelvic pain or unusual bleeding, call Mills Obstetrics & Gynecology or book an appointment online.