A normal uterine cavity (womb) and endometrial lining is essential for a woman to be able to conceive and carry a pregnancy to term. Conditions such a congenital abnormalities can impact the uterus and cervix. In some countries health professionals still check the cervical mucus but this is no longer considered relevant in the UK, as IVF or IUI treatment overcomes any issues with the mucus.
Fibroids are non-cancerous growths that develop in or around the womb (uterus) they do not always cause a problem, it depends where they are located. They are made of muscle and fibrous tissue and vary in size. It is thought that their formation is linked to the hormone oestrogen. Other names include uterine myomas or leiomyomas. They most commonly occur in women over 30 of African-Caribbean origin but not exclusively.
Symptoms: Many women are unaware they have fibroids because they don’t have any symptoms. But symptoms in about 1 in 3 women include heavy periods or painful periods, lower back pain, pain or discomfort during sex.
Diagnosis: by a routine gynaecological examination or scan.
Treatment: fibroids often shrink and disappear without treatment but if they are causing discomfort there are medications available or surgery is an option.