A uterine fibroid (also called a fibromyoma, leiomyoma, or myoma) is a noncancerous growth of the uterus. A uterine fibroid may be as small as a pea or as large as a grapefruit. It grows slowly in the uterus and it may grow in the cervix. As the fibroid grows, the uterus may become deformed or displaced. The growing size of the uterus due to the fibroid may cause symptoms in the bladder or intestine. In very rare cases, a fibroid can grow rapidly and may become cancerous.
The cause of uterine fibroids is not known, but it may be related to changes in the levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone and in proteins called growth factors. For example, pregnancy, use of birth control pills, and some hormone therapies may speed the growth of fibroids. It also appears that women may inherit the tendency to develop fibroids.
How can I take care of myself when I go home?
How long it takes to get better depends on your treatment, how well you recover, your overall health, and any complications you may have.
Your provider will give you a list of your medicines when you leave the hospital.
Know your medicines. Know what they look like, how much you should take each time, how often you are to take them, and why you take each one.
Take your medicines exactly as your provider tells you to.
Carry a list of your medicines in your wallet or purse. Include any nonprescription medicines and supplements on the list.
Your provider may prescribe medicine to:
Treat or prevent an infection
Prevent side effects, such as nausea or constipation, from other treatments
Soften stool and reduce straining with a bowel movement
If you have had surgery, to care for your incision:
Keep your incision clean.
If you are told to change your dressing on your incision, wash your hands before changing the dressing and after disposing of the dressing.
Follow your provider’s instructions for follow-up appointments.
Keep appointments for any routine testing you may need.
Talk with your provider about any questions or fears you have.
Diet, Exercise, and Other Lifestyle Changes
Follow the treatment plan your healthcare provider prescribes.
Follow activity restrictions, such as not driving or operating machinery, as recommended by your healthcare provider or pharmacist, especially if you are taking pain medicines.
Get plenty of rest while youâ€™re recovering. Try to get at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night.
Try to find other people to help you with your day-to-day duties as you recover.
Eat a healthy diet.
Do not put anything in the vagina, including tampons, or have sex until your provider says it is okay.
Do not do any heavy lifting or otherwise strain the belly muscles for 4 to 6 weeks.
If you have had a hysterectomy:
If you were having menstrual periods before the surgery, you will no longer have them after the operation.
You cannot become pregnant.
If your ovaries were removed, menopause starts right away.
Call your healthcare provider if you have new or worsening:
Dizziness or fainting
Shortness of breath
Change in bowel habits, such as pain, mucus, diarrhea, constipation, or other intestinal problems
Heavy vaginal bleeding
Trouble emptying the bladder
Vaginal discharge with a bad odor or itching
Signs of infection around your surgical wound. These include:
The area around the wound is more red or painful
The wound area is very warm to touch
You have blood, pus, or other fluid coming from the wound area
You have a fever higher than 101.5Â° F (38.6Â° C)
You have chills or muscle aches
Developed by RelayHealth.
Acute Care Advisor 2015.1 published by RelayHealth. Last modified: 2013-12-11 Last reviewed: 2014-04-24
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.