Endometrial polyps are growths that occur in the inner lining of the uterus, known as the endometrium. They are usually benign (non-cancerous) and can range in size from a few millimeters to several centimeters. Endometrial polyps are formed from an overgrowth of endometrial tissue and are attached to the uterus by a stalk.
They can affect fertility by:
- Interfering with implantation of a fertilized egg
- Impairing normal endometrial growth and development
- Causing abnormal menstrual bleeding
Risk factors for endometrial polyps include:
- Increasing age
- Estrogen dominance
- Family history of endometrial polyps
Symptoms of endometrial polyps include:
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding
- Irregular periods
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Pelvic pain
Treatment for endometrial polyps
Treatment depends on several factors such as the size, number, and symptoms of the polyps. Some common treatments for endometrial polyps include:
- Hormonal therapy: This involves taking medications to regulate hormonal levels and reduce the size of the polyps.
- Polypectomy: This is a procedure where the polyp is removed through the cervix using a hysteroscope, which is a thin, flexible instrument with a light and camera. Polypectomy can be done in an outpatient setting and is typically done under general or local anesthesia.
- Hysterectomy: In some cases, a hysterectomy may be recommended if the polyps are large or cause significant symptoms. A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the uterus.
- Observation: If the polyps are small and not causing any symptoms, a doctor may choose to monitor them with regular exams and ultrasounds instead of treating them.
It’s important to note that not all endometrial polyps need to be treated, and the best course of action will depend on an individual’s specific situation. It’s always recommended to discuss the potential benefits and risks of different treatment options with a senior doctor.