Symptoms Of Uterine Polyps: Its Causes And Treatment Options

A uterine polyp is a small growth which is attached to the inner wall of the uterus and extends into the cavity of the uterus. When there is a huge multiplication of the cells of the endometrium of the uterus, polyps form. By and large, polyps are non cancerous, although some may be precancerous and can eventually turn in to cancer.

Polyps may be a few millimeters to several centimeters large. They are attached to the wall of the uterus by a big base or a narrow stalk. There may one or many of them.

Usually polyps stay within the uterine cavity, however, sporadically, some slip through the cervix into the vagina. They are commonly seen in menopausal and peri-menopausal women. Assessment and evaluation of the polyps is necessary and prompt treatment action is required.

Causes And Symptoms Of Uterine Polyps

Alterations in the hormone profile have a significant role to play in the development of uterine polyps. Uterine polyps are estrogen sensitive, which means that they grow in response to the hormone estrogen in the blood.

Risk factors for the development of uterine polyps:

  • Being peri-menopausal or after menopause has set in.
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • If you are on to prescribed tamoxifen, a drug for breast cancer.

Signs and symptoms of uterine polyps are:

  • Irregular menstrual bleeding; there could be frequent, erratic periods of usually heavy flow.
  • Bleeding between periods.
  • Extremely heavy episodes of bleeding.
  • Bleeding after menopause.
  • Infertility
  • Some women have only spotting.
  • Some are asymptomatic.

You must seek immediate medical care in case of:

  • Bleeding after menopause.
  • Bleeding between periods.

Treatment Options For Uterine Polyps

It is vital that a prompt diagnosis is made and appropriate treatment is started. Visit your OB/GYN, she will recommend:

  • Trans-vaginal ultrasound: This creates an image of the uterus, including the cavity. Your doctor will be able to identify a uterine polyp.
  • Hysteroscopy: The doctor will introduce a flexible, lighted telescope in to the vagina and in to the cervix and uterus. He helps examine and assess the inside of the uterus.
  • Endometrial biopsy: A suction catheter may be used to collect a specimen for testing. Uterine polyps can be verified by an endometrial biopsy. By and large, uterine polyps are non cancerous. On the other hand, some precancerous changes as well as malignancies manifest as uterine polyps. Your OB/GYN will advocate an excision of the polyp and will send a tissue sample for analysis to make certain that you do not have uterine cancer.
  • Your doctor will advise watchful waiting. Small polyps which do not produce any clinical features tend to resolve on their own. Treatment of small polyps is usually not required unless there is a risk for cancer.
  • Your doctor will prescribe hormonal medications to help reduce and manage the symptoms better. However, these medications provide only a temporary solution; the symptoms characteristically recur when the medicines are stopped.
  • Surgical intervention: During hysteroscopy, sometimes, your doctor may elect to excise the polyp. The excised polyp will be sent for microscopic evaluation. In case the polyp contains malignant cells, your doctor will discuss with you about further assessment and management.