Are myomas cancerous?
In dzMM's "Magandang Gabi Dok", ob-gyne Sharon Gianan-Cruz shed some light on what myomas are and how they affect women's health.
Cruz clarified that a myoma, also called fibroid, is a benign (non-cancerous) tumor. It may or may not be cancerous.
"Myoma is actually a muscular bukol and when we say benign, hindi po siya cancerous. But it can be cancerous pero hindi ganung mataas ang incidence na maging cancer siya."
According to Cruz, there are three types of myoma:
An intramural myoma, which is the most common type, developed inside the uterine wall. It makes the uterus larger than usual.
This may result to women who look pregnant even if not great with child.
This type means it developed outside the uterus.
"That will give you the least of problems kasi 'yun, hindi siya makakaapekto sa regla mo."
On the other hand, if the myoma is submucous, it means it developed within the lining of the uterus. Its symptoms include problems with the menstrual cycle.
Sometimes, if the patient experiences its extreme effects, it may result to unusually heavy menstruation which may even need blood transfusion to make up for the lost blood.
If the myoma is small (measuring less than 4 centimeters), there is no need to worry about it. However, it may have a lasting effect on some patients, especially to those who want to build a family.
Cruz said, myomas are common to women who are not sexually active, such as nuns.
If a patient is still looking forward to having a baby, the myoma is carefully removed from the uterus. The myoma may also be removed together with the womb through hysterectomy, but this will result to barrenness.
Since the myoma's growth is stimulated by hormones, a pregnant patient's tumor may increase in size as the baby grows inside the womb. This will result to a bigger swelling in the abdomen.
But Cruz clarified, this is not dangerous because the myoma's size shrinks after a mother gives birth.
Usually, three months after the pregnancy, the fibroid may be reduced to 6 to 10 inches which can already be removed by doctors.
The doctor recommends to visit the ob-gyne once a year to detect the myoma on its early stage, while it is still small.
"'Pag sexually active ka na, no matter what age, you have to go to your annual gyne. If you are not sexually active, I would recommend siguro 30."