What Does Uterine Fibroid Pain Feel Like?

Fibroids can impact your daily life, from heavy bleeding to pain caused by fibroids. When it comes to fibroid pain, many women may experience cramping, as well as abdominal, leg, and back pain.  

The intensity of the pain can vary greatly, ranging from mild discomfort to debilitating agony, depending on the fibroids’ size, number, and location. Some women may find the pain intermittent, while others may experience constant discomfort that disrupts their ability to work, socialize, or engage in daily activities. Additionally, the pain can fluctuate throughout the menstrual cycle, often becoming more severe during menstruation when hormone levels are highest.

If you are dealing with pain but aren’t sure if it’s caused by fibroids, our symptom checker below can help you figure out if it’s time to consult a fibroid specialist.


Understanding Fibroids

Uterine fibroids are non-cancerous tumors affecting approximately 70-80% of women before reaching 50. Besides experiencing pain and cramps,  fibroid symptoms vary widely, with some women having more severe symptoms while others are relatively asymptomatic.

These symptoms include: 

  • Heavy and prolonged periods 
  • Pelvic discomfort 
  • Bloating, constipation 
  • Fatigue caused by anemia

It’s easy to mistake certain types of fibroid pain as routine menstrual discomfort. However, recognizing any deviations in period length, heaviness, or regularity is crucial, as these could signal an underlying fibroid issue.

If left undiagnosed or untreated, fibroids can lead to complications such as anemia due to heavy bleeding, fertility issues, and, in some cases, even complications during pregnancy or childbirth.

If you think you might have fibroids, consulting a fibroid specialist can guide you toward effective treatment options

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Why do Fibroids Cause Pain?

Fibroid pain varies in intensity and presentation depending on the size, location, and type of fibroids. Different types of fibroids are classified by where they grow, and depending on their size, they can put pressure on specific organs or other parts of the body. 

While fibroid pain shares similarities with gynecological conditions, such as endometriosis and adenomyosis, imaging tests like ultrasounds can aid in diagnosing pain from fibroids and ruling out other potential causes.

Types of Fibroid Pain and How to Manage Them

Types of Fibroid Pain and How to Manage Them

While the location of fibroids can sometimes offer clues about the type, it’s not always a definitive indicator of pain. Understanding the different types of fibroids can help you become familiar with the range of potential symptoms. However, a doctor will use imaging tests and examinations to diagnose fibroid type and location accurately.

Can Fibroids Cause Abdominal Pain?

Abdominal pain caused by fibroids can range from mild discomfort to severe, sharp pain. Women with sizable fibroids often report localized pelvic or abdominal discomfort, varying in intensity and distribution. In rare cases, complications such as hemorrhagic infarction, particularly during pregnancy, can precipitate intense, constant abdominal pain.

The most common ways fibroids are likely to cause abdominal pain are:

  • Pressure on the rectum: Fibroids in this area may hinder bowel movements, cause constipation, and potentially lead to hemorrhoids. 
  • Intensify menstrual cramping: As fibroids grow, they can distend the uterus, causing bloating and more severe cramps while menstruating.
  • Discomfort or heaviness in the lower abdomen: This heaviness is commonly felt above the pubic bone and can intensify during menstruation or persist throughout the month.
  • Sharp, sudden pelvic pain: Typically caused by fibroid degeneration, it can last for a few weeks. The best way to alleviate the pain is with medication and heat therapy. 

There are many ways abdominal pain caused by fibroids shows up. If you’re experiencing any of this pain alongside other fibroid symptoms, consult a medical professional for your treatment options. 


Can Fibroids Cause Leg Pain?

Leg pain from fibroids can stem from their interaction with surrounding nerves and muscles, particularly with larger fibroids or those outside the uterus. While leg pain caused by fibroids is rare, it can manifest when these growths exert pressure on adjacent nerves, triggering discomfort radiating down the leg. It also can coincide with lower back pain, as fibroids compressing spinal nerves can radiate pain into the legs. 

Although leg pain from fibroids is possible, it is a relatively uncommon symptom.

Sciatica Nerve Pain

One of the significant symptoms of leg pain caused by fibroids is that it mirrors sciatica. Sciatica is sharp, shooting pains originating in the buttock region and traveling down the leg. The sciatic nerve goes through the hips, buttocks, and down the legs, branching into other nerves below the knee.

Factors such as aging, obesity, and physical strain can lead to sciatica, but the pain can also be caused by fibroids. Large growths exert pressure on pelvic nerves or directly compress the sciatic nerve. Subserosal or large intramural fibroids in the uterus posterior can pose a particular risk. 

Can Fibroids Cause Back Pain?

Fibroids can cause back pain by pressing on nerves and muscles in the lower back. The pain may intensify during menstruation, mirroring menstrual cramps, or come across as a persistent ache or stiffness.

While back pain is associated with muscle soreness or routine use, women with fibroids face a higher risk of prolonged discomfort. 

The Impact of Fibroid Pain on Daily Life

The Impact of Fibroid Pain on Daily Life

Fibroid pain can impact other aspects of women’s physical and mental well-being in addition to abdominal, leg, and back pain. Understanding how pain caused by fibroids affects these aspects of life can help identify fibroid pain.  

Fibroid pain can disrupt women’s lives in ways such as:

  • Sleep disruption 
  • Mobility issues
  • Fatigue 
  • Irritability
  • Mood disturbances
  • Discomfort or pain during intercourse 
  • Straining romantic relationship
  • Causing feelings of frustration, anxiety, or low self-esteem.
  • Difficulty concentrating reduced productivity 
  • Issues in work life from absenteeism due to pain symptoms 

USA Fibroid Centers’ patients also dealt with disruptive pains interfering with their lives. However, seeking non-invasive treatment like uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) significantly improved their lives. 

Read more from our patients below:

My fibroids were causing me so much pain and discomfort. Thanks to USA Fibroid Centers on Graham Ave in NY, I have a new lease on life.


I missed A LOT of work and my boss tried to be nice, but her boss was pressuring her, so I was let go. I could hardly get out of bed…the pain was THAT bad. I went to a lot of hospitals and ob-gyns and by far this center was the best. USA Fibroid Centers was nice and made me feel like I was being told the real story, nothing fake or clouded. The clinic was clean and I got an appointment right away. I feel good now after treating my fibroids; I got a new job and I don’t miss work because of bleeding. I’m glad I went before it got even worse! Thank you.



Managing Uterine Fibroid Discomfort

Managing fibroid pain can be challenging, but there are adjustments you can make to handle the pain in the meantime. Here are a few ways to cope with fibroid pain:

  • Getting a good night’s sleep: Good sleep can help with fibroid pain. If you struggle with sleep, try altering sleeping positions and using a body pillow to relieve pressure on the abdomen and lower back. 
  • Diet: Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods like fruits, vegetables, and omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation, along with avoiding fibroid-inflammatory foods, such as processed items and caffeine.
  • Exercise: Regular physical activity promotes blood flow, reduces stress, and releases endorphins for managing uterine fibroid discomfort.
  • Stress management: Stress exacerbates fibroid symptoms, so including deep breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness can alleviate discomfort. Connecting with supportive people such as friends, family, or a therapist is also essential for emotional support. 
  • Over-the-counter pain medication: Medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can temporarily offer relief from pain caused by fibroids
  • Fibroid Treatment: Medical treatment may be necessary if lifestyle modifications and over-the-counter medications are insufficient. 

Fortunately, fibroid treatment is widely available, ranging from surgical interventions like hysterectomy and myomectomy to non-surgical approaches such as UFE (Uterine Fibroid Embolization).

How USA Fibroids Can Help with Your Fibroid Pain

At USA Fibroid Centers, our dedicated team specializes in providing top-quality care through UFE and catering to individuals seeking relief from fibroid symptoms such as fibroid pain without surgery. 

Contact USA Fibroid Centers today at 855.615.2555 or schedule your consultation online. Let’s find you the right treatment plan so you can get back to living your best life.

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