Understanding Fibroid Sloughing

Fibroid sloughing, also known as fibroid degeneration or necrosis, refers to a natural process where a uterine fibroid undergoes cell death and subsequent breakdown.  In some cases, due to their rapid growth or a decrease in their blood supply, the fibroids can outgrow their blood vessels, leading to insufficient oxygen and nutrients reaching the fibroid tissue.

As a result, portions of the fibroid may start to die off. During fibroid sloughing, the dead tissue may disintegrate and be expelled from the body, often resulting in vaginal discharge containing blood and pieces of tissue. For someone women this may be uncomfortable and cause temporary symptoms, such as abdominal pain and cramping, however, it is usually not a cause for major concern. We do encourage you to consult with a doctor who specializes in uterine fibroids if there are any concerns or if the symptoms become severe to rule out any complications and ensure appropriate management.

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Fibroid Sloughing After UFE

UFE is a highly effective procedure to treat uterine fibroids, and while fibroid sloughing is an infrequent occurrence, it may still happen in some cases. Patients should be attentive to any changes in their vaginal discharge, particularly if it appears darker and contains clots or tissue fragments. Though fibroid sloughing is generally not a cause for major concern, promptly informing the healthcare provider about such symptoms allows for proper evaluation and reassurance.

Being vigilant and knowledgeable about potential post-UFE outcomes empowers patients to distinguish normal recovery from any unusual occurrences, ensuring a smooth healing process and providing peace of mind after this FDA approved fibroid treatment.

What Does Fibroid Shedding look?

Fibroid shedding, another term used for fibroid sloughing, is the expulsion of fibroid tissue from the uterus. It can present as dark, clotted vaginal discharge containing tissue fragments, which may range in size and consistency. The shedding process typically occurs in response to fibroid degeneration or necrosis, where the fibroid tissue undergoes cell death due to being cut off from its blood supply. As the fibroid tissue disintegrates, it may be expelled from the body through the vaginal canal, causing temporary symptoms such as vaginal bleeding, cramping, and discomfort. 

Can Your Body Expel a Fibroid? 

In rare cases, the body may expel a fibroid through a process known as fibroid expulsion. This occurs when a uterine fibroid, typically a submucosal fibroid (located within the uterine cavity), becomes detached from the uterine wall and is subsequently expelled from the body through the vagina. Fibroid expulsion is more likely to happen if the fibroid undergoes degeneration or necrosis, leading to a loss of blood supply and weakening its attachment to the uterine lining. The process of fibroid expulsion can cause vaginal bleeding and may be accompanied by abdominal cramps or pain.

In most cases, fibroid expulsion does not eliminate all fibroids, and comprehensive treatment options should still be explored to address any remaining fibroids and manage symptoms effectively

What Are Symptoms of Passing a Fibroid?

Passing a fibroid can be a rare occurrence, but when it happens, it may lead to distinct symptoms. As a fibroid undergoes degeneration or necrosis, the weakened tissue can disintegrate and be expelled from the uterus, potentially resulting in passing a fibroid. In rare cases, fibroid sloughing can lead to infection or sepsis.1 

Symptoms of passing a fibroid can include dark and clotted vaginal discharge containing tissue fragments, similar to a heavy menstrual period. This process may be accompanied by abdominal cramping or discomfort. In most cases, passing a fibroid is a natural part of the body’s healing process after undergoing treatments, but we encourage women to stay pro-active on anything abnormal and to consult with their fibroid doctor.

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Do You Have Questions about Fibroid Sloughing?

If you are concerned about fibroid sloughing or have any questions regarding this rare occurrence, don’t hesitate to contact USA Fibroid Centers for expert guidance and reassurance. Our specialized centers have experienced doctors who are well-versed in diagnosing and treating uterine fibroids and their potential complications

Connect with our Patient Care Coordinators by calling 855.615.2555 or complete our online scheduling form for your initial consultation.


  1. https://www.cdc.gov/sepsis/what-is-sepsis.html