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What's My Risk if My Mother Had Fibroids?

Posted on May 28, 2024

What's your risk for uterine fibroids if your mother had fibroids? (Remember, these are non-cancerous tumors that can cause symptoms including heavy periods, back pain and more.) We can't answer that question with certainty, since science hasn't determined the exact reason why some women develop fibroids and others don't. Though we do know that black women develop these tumors three times more frequently than white women. Still, thanks to recent research, we do know that your fibroid risk will increase based on your family history. Check out the details below.

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If My Mother Had Fibroids, Will I Get These Tumors Too?

A new JAMA Network Open study explored the link between family history and Black women's fibroid risk. Researchers followed 1610 women who were Black or African American and between the ages of 23 and 25. Though none of the women had yet developed fibroids, 37% of their moms did.

Now, once the study began, each participant was given four ultrasounds, spread out over a five year period. The purpose? To detect and monitor the growth of any fibroids that measured at least 0.5 cm. And, at the end of the study period, collected ultrasound data revealed some interesting findings. First, if your mother had fibroids, you were were more likely to develop these tumors too, especially if your mom was diagnosed at a young age. And, if your mom was diagnosed with fibroids at any age, any fibroids you developed were more likely to experience significant growth. So study author Dr. Quaker Harmon said, “We confirmed that earlier maternal diagnosis had the strongest association with fibroid incidence.”

 If My Mother Had Fibroids, What Should I Do?

Since family history is a prove fibroid risk factor, you should be aware of any diagnoses among your female relatives. Then, if you develop any fibroid symptoms, tell your doctor about them right away, also revealing your family fibroid history at your appointment.

Still, you should remember that a family history of fibroids doesn't guarantee you'll develop these tumors, too. So you don't have to sit at home, worrying and waiting for symptoms to appear. However, if you do , detect changes to your menstrual cycle or other fibroid warning signs, see your healthcare provider right away. Then, if you receive a fibroids diagnosis, click here to request a consultation with our fibroid specialists in Georgia.

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