Many women may mistake normal menstrual cramps with pelvic pain from uterine fibroids; however without treatment, cramping due to fibroids can intensify over time. Luckily, there’s a treatment that’s both convenient and effective, allowing you to get back to your everyday life without painful cramps.
What Is Uterine Fibroid Cramping?
Uterine fibroids are benign tumors that form inside the wall of your uterus. They can weigh up to a few pounds or be as small as an apple seed. Although they’re typically non-cancerous, it doesn’t mean they don’t come with a host of symptoms. Women with fibroids can deal with everything from heavy and painful periods to cramps and back pain. Depending on the size, shape, and number of your uterine fibroids, you could experience more painful menstrual cramps.
Pelvic pain or cramping due to uterine fibroids is caused by two things:
- When blood clots travel from the uterus through the cervix in to the vagina this can elicit pain. Blood clots are most likely to develop and leave the body during heavy, prolonged periods.
- If the fibroids are large enough to press on adjacent pelvic nerves, this can cause cramping or pressure. This pain can radiate through the lower back, abdomen, buttocks, and legs.
Uterine Fibroids vs. Period Pain
It’s important to understand the difference between uterine fibroids and period pain. Your normal menstrual cramps are contractions of the uterine muscle that shed the uterine lining and release a hormone-like substance called prostaglandins. It’s this substance that causes pain and inflammation and can increase the intensity of the contractions, leading to painful menstrual cramps. These cramps usually start shortly before your period and end after a day or two, although some women will experience mild cramping throughout their entire period.
On the other hand, uterine fibroid cramping is more intense. Severe menstrual cramps on their own are known as primary dysmenorrhea. When you have particularly bad menstrual cramps that are caused by a disease or a physical problem, it’s known as secondary dysmenorrhea. Period pain from uterine fibroids is classified as secondary dysmenorrhea, and it will feel worse than your usual menstrual cramps.
You may also notice an increase in bleeding during your period when you have fibroids. This is because fibroids increase the surface area of your uterine lining, which can cause both your cramps and your bleeding to become more intense. Fibroids also decrease uterus’ normal ability to stop bleeding, like it does during your regular menstrual cycle. Intramural fibroids grow closer to the uterine cavity; therefore, an increase of blood flow can affect the normal systems that control bleeding within the uterus. Intramural fibroids will also increase the size of the uterine cavity, thus causing a woman to bleed more than usual and experience intense pelvic pain.
If you notice these differences during your menstrual cycle, it’s important to contact a uterine fibroid specialist to get checked.
Treatment for Fibroid Menstrual Cramps
Cramps can make performing daily activities like attending work and school, close to impossible. Many women continue to put up with painful cramping and pressure because they are unaware that there are non-surgical procedures available. USA Fibroid Centers is here to help with our Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) treatment. This outpatient procedure can shrink your fibroids and diminish your uterine fibroid cramps. Having an invasive surgery should not be your only option. Unlike other surgical procedures such as a hysterectomy or a myomectomy, UFE does not require a hospital stay or long recovery. You’ll be able to resume your normal activities in five to seven days and recover completely in one to two weeks.
Contact USA Fibroid Centers Today
USA Fibroid Centers is here to help you find a fibroid menstrual cramps treatment that works. Contact us today to learn more about uterine fibroids, or take our symptom quiz to figure out if you have period pain or uterine fibroids.