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Diagnosis and Treatment of Fibroids and Polyps
Fibroids are often discovered during a pelvic exam. To confirm the diagnosis, the doctor may ask you to have a trans-vaginal or pelvic ultrasound, an MRI, or an endometrial biopsy.
Although there are several ways to treat fibroids, most treatments affect fertility. Hormone therapy, uterine fibroid embolization, and a hysterectomy can treat the symptoms but are not recommended for women planning to get pregnant. Fibroids can grow back (except following a hysterectomy) so you may need to be treated more than once.
The only treatment for women who want to maintain their fertility is a surgical procedure called a myomectomy. This procedure preserves the uterus but removes the fibroids that are causing pain or excessive bleeding. A myomectomy can be performed in a number of ways. The type of myomectomy recommended depends on the type, size and location of your fibroids.
Polyps are also usually found during a pelvic exam. There are several ways to confirm the diagnosis. A type of ultrasound called a sonohysterogram uses sterile water to open the uterine cavity and let the doctor see any polyps that are there. Another type of diagnostic test is a hysterosalpingogram which uses dye to open the uterus. An x-ray then shows if any polyps are in the uterus. A procedure called a hysteroscopy uses a thin telescope-like viewing device to look inside the uterus and confirm the presence of polyps.
If you have polyps, they can be treated during a hysteroscopy. Used not only for diagnosis but also for treatment, a hysteroscope lets the doctor remove the polyps. If the polyps are infected you may have to take an antibiotic after the procedure.