Uterine Fibroids and Infertility
Infertility is a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse. Uterine fibroids are the most common tumor in women, and their prevalence is high in patients with infertility. Fibroids may be the sole cause of infertility in 2-3% of women. Depending on their location in the uterus, fibroids have been implicated in recurrent pregnancy loss as well as infertility. Pregnancy and live birth rates appear to be low in women with submucosal fibroids; their resection has been shown to improve pregnancy rates. In contrast, subserosal fibroids do not affect fertility outcomes and their removal does not confer any benefit. Intramural fibroids appear to reduce fertility, but recommendations concerning their treatment remain unclear. Myomectomy should be discussed individually with the patient; other potential symptoms such as dysmenorrhea or bleeding disorders should be included in the indication for surgery.