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Posted 04/27/2021 in Category 1 by Amelia Grant

7 Commonly Asked Questions About Uterine(Endometrial) Polyps

7 Commonly Asked Questions About Uterine(Endometrial) Polyps

There are a variety of health conditions that can affect the female reproductive system. Some of them aren’t dangerous while others can cause serious health problems and decrease the quality of your life. If you are a woman, educating yourself about common gynecological conditions can preserve your health and reproductive function. 

One of the conditions that are worth your attention is uterine polyps. This disease affects about 24% of the general population but in postmenopausal women the percentage increase. The biggest problem of uterine polyps that up to 5 percent of them appear to be cancerous. 

Below are 7 important facts you need to know about uterine fibroids. 

1. What are uterine polyps?

Uterine polyps are growth that develops on the inner wall of your uterus(endometrium). They form because of the overgrowth of endometrial tissue. The polyps may have round or oval forms and range in size from a small seed to a golf ball. In several women, polyps may grow even bigger. Almost all polyps(about 95 percent) are non-cancerous but they still cause unpleasant symptoms and can affect your fertility. 

2. What are the symptoms of uterine polyps?

The most common symptom of uterine polyps is problems with the menstrual cycle. You may experience irregular bleeding, heavy bleeding during menstruation, and spotting between periods. If you have already entered menopause and your periods have stopped, you may experience vaginal spotting or bleeding. The inability to conceive and carry a child is another symptom of uterine polyps. 

3. What causes endometrial polyps?

There is no clear understanding of what causes endometrial polyps, but hormonal imbalances can be responsible. In fact, estrogen that plays a role in the endometrial thickening is linked to the development of endometrial polyps. 

4. Who is more at risk of uterine polyps?

Uterine polyps usually affect women after the age of 40. They commonly occur after menopause and rarely affect women during their reproductive ages. If you are obese or have problems with blood pressure(hypertension), this can increase your chances to develop uterine polyps. Taking certain medications like tamoxifen(used to treat breast cancer) can also put you at risk of uterine polyps. 

5. Are polyps dangerous?

In most cases, polyps are benign and don’t cause severe health issues. But occasionally they can be cancerous. The only doctor can identify if your endometrial polyps are cancerous. The doctor can suggest removing non-cancerous endometrial polyps if they decrease the quality of your life and cause symptoms and occur during reproductive age.  

6. How are uterine polyps diagnosed?

It is important to describe to your doctor the symptoms you have. Let the doctor know if you have irregular menstrual bleeding, spotting, heavy menstruation, or difficulty to conceive a baby. Then the doctor performs a pelvic examination and may order additional tests. These tests may include procedures like transvaginal ultrasound, sonohysterography, hysteroscopy, and endometrial biopsy. 

Transvaginal ultrasound is a procedure the doctor inserts in your vaginal a small device. This device emits sound waves and provides an image of your uterus. This allows the doctor to see any abnormalities or overgrowth inside your uterus. 

Sonohysterography is a procedure related to transvaginal ultrasound. During sonohysterography, the doctor introduces in your uterus a special sterile fluid. This fluid expands your uterus and lets the doctor get a more clear image of your uterus. 

Hysteroscopy is a medical procedure used to both diagnose and treat endometrial polyps. During this procedure, the doctor inserts a thin lighted telescope inside your uterus. This allows the doctor to examine the uterus. 

Endometrial biopsy is a procedure designed to diagnose uterine polyps and determine whether they are cancerous. During this procedure, the doctor inserted in your uterus oft plastic instrument to collect tissue from your uterus and sent it to the laboratory for testing. 

7. How are uterine polyps treated?

If your endometrial polyps don’t cause any sym[toms, the doctor can suggest a strategy of watchful waiting. If you experience symptoms, several treatment options are used to treat endometrial polyps. The polyps discovered after menopause should be removed no matter if they are cancerous or benign. 

The treatment of endometrial polyps includes medications, minimally-invasive procedures, and surgery. Medications can help regulate hormones and ease symptoms. But this is a temporary option because symptoms return when you stop taking medications. Minimally invasive procedures like hysteroscopy and curettage allow the doctor to examine your uterus and remove small polyps. 

If polyps are cancerous or cannot be removed with minimally-invasive techniques, the doctor may suggest surgery. If polyps are cancerous the doctor may recommend a procedure called hysterectomy. During this procedure, the surgeon removes the entire uterus. 

The bottom line

Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent uterine polyps. It is crucial to visit your gynecologist regularly for a pelvic examination to spot them in the early stage. You also need to eliminate risk factors like obesity and hypertension.