The uterus is a hollow organ located in a woman's pelvis between the bladder and rectum. Fibroids a...
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The uterus is a hollow organ located in a woman's pelvis between the bladder and rectum. Fibroids are noncancerous growths of cells from the muscular layer of the uterine wall. A fibroid's location can affect both symptoms and treatment. Three primary types are fibroids on the outside wall, called subserous; partly in the cavity and partly in the wall, called submucosal; and penduculated fibroids, which are connected to the uterus by a stalk. Many women have single or multiple fibroids, sometimes of different types. They range in size from as small as a pea to larger than a cantaloupe. Fibroids often cause no symptoms and are often only discovered because of a pelvic exam or ultrasound for another reason. Some women, particularly those with submucosal fibroids, experience prolonged, heavy menstrual bleeding. Subserous tumors sometimes press on the bladder, causing urinary symptoms, or on the rectum, causing constipation. A fibroid pressing on the spinal nerves can cause back or leg pain. Fibroids can also cause pelvic pain or pressure. There are many treatment options for fibroids, including watchful waiting, medications, and surgery.