Women who plan to bear children and have uterine fibroids that are disrupting fertility may be eligible for a myomectomy. This surgical procedure removes fibroid growths, which are usually non-cancerous. In some cases, women elect a myomectomy because they want to keep their uteruses. The surgery can reduce heavy menstrual bleeding, frequent urination, and pressure in the pelvic area. Although fibroids have a higher occurrence in African American women, they are common in women in general, and most women have relatively few symptoms. By age 50, about 80 percent of African American women and 70 percent of Caucasian women have fibroids.
The doctor may order blood or urine tests before performing a myomectomy. In most cases, these tests are routine, confirming previous results or ensuring there have not been any new developments since the diagnosis of fibroid tumors. He or she may use a hysteroscope to view the uterus or remove uterine tissue to send to a lab to test for cancer. If the doctor needs to determine the size of the tumors the exact location, he may order an ultrasound or MRI. All of these tests help ensure the success of the myomectomy.
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