The cervix is a small opening at the base of a woman's uterus. This structure, 3 to 5 centimeters in length, connects the vagina to the uterus. Smooth, firm masses that grow along the cervix are called cervical fibroids. Symptoms of cervical fibroids include pain, menstrual changes, and bowel or bladder changes.
Abdominal Cramping or Pain
Cervical fibroids can inflame and irritate the cervix and uterus, which are located within a woman's lower abdomen. Abdominal inflammation can lead to mild to severe abdominal cramping, pain or pressure in women with cervical fibroids. Abdominal or pelvic pain can be most severe during a woman's monthly menstrual cycle. In certain cases, abdominal pain can radiate into the lower back.
Menstrual Cycle Changes
Women with cervical fibroids can experience prolonged or unusually heavy menstrual periods as symptoms of this condition. Increased blood loss during heavy menstrual cycles can elevate a woman's risk of developing anemia, a condition characterized by low red blood cell levels. Spotting may also occur between periods.
A large cervical fibroid can place unusual pressure on a woman's bladder. Increased bladder pressure can lead to frequent or uncomfortable urination in affected women. Increased urination can also occur due to the presence of a urinary tract infection or a sexually transmitted disease. Affected women should discuss their symptoms with a medical professional to ensure receipt of appropriate treatment.
A cervical fibroid can press into a woman's rectum, which can prevent the normal passage of digested food products out of the body. Consequently, women with cervical fibroids can develop difficulty having a bowel movement, a symptom called constipation. Constipation can exacerbate abdominal pain, bloating or discomfort in women with cervical fibroids.
Pain During Intercourse
Women with cervical fibroids can experience unusual sensations of pain during or after sexual intercourse, a symptom medically referred to as dyspareunia. Vaginal penetration can irritate the affected cervical tissue, which can cause mild vaginal bleeding in certain women. Dyspareunia is not a normal occurrence and affected women should seek guidance from a physician.