Vaginal bleeding after sex - a cause of Fibroid Tumour

One of the causes of post-sex bleeding is the presence of fibroid tumours in your uterus. In this case, you need to get treatment for fibroids, which would then relieve you from post-coital bleeding

By Dr Parul R Sheth

You have had sex and you discover that you are bleeding. Vaginal bleeding after sex can be scary. Bleeding after sexual intercourse or post-coital bleeding is a common occurrence. The causes can be many from being simple to being serious. You need to seek medical help to detect the cause of bleeding and get proper treatment for the underlying cause. One of the causes of post-sex bleeding is the presence of fibroid tumours in your uterus. In this case, you need to get treatment for fibroids, which would then relieve you from post-coital bleeding.

Uterine fibroid tumours are non-cancerous growths of the uterus. These appear mostly during your child-bearing years. Fortunately uterine fibroid tumours are not associated with an increased risk of uterine cancer and these do not develop into cancer. The occurrence of fibroids is so common that as many as 3 out of 4 women have uterine fibroid tumours sometime during their lives.

According to Dr Krantikumar Rathod, Department of Radiology, KEM Hospital, Mumbai, many women go through their lives having uterine fibroids without being aware of them and having no gynaecological problems. Unless the doctor goes looking for them you may not know about their presence particularly because they may be small, symptom free and always non-cancerous.  However, in the presence of bleeding after sex, you require tests to ascertain the cause.

Fibroid diagnosis
Several vaginal, cervical or uterine conditions can lead to bleeding after sex, such as common inflammation, various sexually transmitted diseases or abnormal growths that can include cancer. Diagnosing vaginal bleeding after sex is usually a matter of exclusion. Anytime you experience post-coital bleeding or vaginal bleeding after sex you must see your doctor. After ruling out other causes for post-coital bleeding your doctor may want to check for the presence of fibroids in the uterus.

There can be irregularities in the shape of your uterus suggesting the presence of fibroids. An ultrasound test can help confirm the finding. Other tests include hysterosonography, hysterosalpingography and hysteroscopy to view the insides of your uterus.  Imaging techniques such as computerized tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be necessary to locate the fibroids.   

Resolving the problem
Many uterine disorders can cause post-coital bleeding including endometriosis, uterine polyps and uterine fibroids. A variety of treatments are available depending upon the cause and severity. For instance, hormone therapy or surgery are used to treat endometriosis, uterine polyps can be managed with medication or surgical excision using a hysteroscope, an endoscope used to view the uterine cavity.

If presence of fibroids in the uterus is the cause for post-sex bleeding, they need to be removed. Many treatment options exist although there is no single best approach. Uterine fibroids can be shrunk with medication and a minimally invasive surgical procedure known as uterine artery embolization (UAE). Also other surgical procedures include myomectomy or surgical removal of fibroids. Focused ultrasound surgery ablates the fibroids using high-frequency, high energy sound waves. The ultimate solution is hysterectomy in which the uterus is removed either abdominally, vaginally, laparoscopically or laparoscopically assisted vaginal hysterectomy (LAVH). 

Treatment for uterine disorders including fibroids can be time consuming and therefore symptoms like bleeding after sex may not fully go away until the condition is resolved.

Picture credit; Yay Micro/India Picture

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