If you have symptomatic fibroids, you’re no stranger to the pain, heavy menstrual bleeding, and discomfort that they cause, and if you have asymptomatic fibroids, you may wonder when (or if) you’ll experience those symptoms.
Regardless of what types of symptoms you have (or don’t have), you may wonder if those fibroids will ever go away on their own. Here in Fresno, California, our team at Fresno Fibroid Center hears this question quite a bit.
Let’s unpack this question.
Understanding fibroids: why you may or may not have symptoms yet
Before diving into the topic, it's important to understand fibroids and their characteristics. Fibroids vary in size, shape, and location, and they can range from small, undetectable nodules to large masses that distort the uterus. These growths are influenced by hormonal factors, particularly estrogen and progesterone, which play a significant role in their development and growth.
Depending on the size and location of your fibroids, you may experience bloating, abdominal pain, pelvic pain, painful and heavy periods, long periods, and even trouble conceiving. Understandably, if you already have symptoms, you’re more than ready to do what it takes to shrink those fibroids.
Will they resolve on their own?
While it’s possible for some fibroids to resolve on their own 一 particularly if estrogen levels decrease 一 it's crucial to note that the likelihood of spontaneous resolution depends on various factors, such as the size and location of your fibroids.
Size and location
Small fibroids, especially those located on the outer surface of the uterus (subserosal fibroids), have a higher chance of resolving on their own. These fibroids are more likely to shrink over time, particularly after menopause when hormonal levels decrease. However, larger fibroids or those located inside the uterine cavity (submucosal fibroids) are less likely to resolve spontaneously.
Menopause and hormonal changes
As you approach menopause, your body naturally produces fewer hormones. While this can contribute to a plethora of unwanted symptoms like hot flashes and mood swings, the decreasing hormone levels can also contribute to the natural resolution of fibroids. It's important to note that this process can take time and may not happen for all women in menopause.
During pregnancy, your hormonal changes can affect the size and growth of fibroids. In some cases, fibroids may shrink during pregnancy, particularly after the first trimester when hormone levels stabilize. However, pregnancy isn’t a guaranteed resolution method, and your fibroids may continue to grow or remain unchanged throughout your pregnancy and afterward.
While lifestyle changes alone may not cause fibroids to resolve, they can help manage symptoms and promote your overall well-being. The following lifestyle modifications can help support healthy hormone levels and better symptom control:
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Engage in regular physical activity
- Manage stress levels
- Eat a balanced diet
- Avoid hormone-disrupting chemicals
Interestingly, getting vitamin D can also help reduce your risk of future fibroids, so be sure to spend a little time each day soaking up the fresh air!
Consultation and treatment options
To return to the initial questions 一 do fibroids resolve on their own 一 the truth is that some fibroids may resolve on their own, but the likelihood of spontaneous resolution depends on various factors, such as size, location, and hormonal influences.
If you suspect you have fibroids, you don’t have to wait it out and just hope they shrink. At the Fresno Fibroid Center, our team of experts is on a mission to help women find relief from uterine fibroids.
During your appointment, we can confirm that fibroids are the source of your symptoms and discuss the right treatment options for you. Treatment options may include watchful waiting, medication, minimally invasive procedures, or, in some cases, surgical intervention.
To learn more about your potential treatment options, call our Fresno, California, office at 559-216-0746 or use our online form to get started.