If the fibroids are large enough to cause symptoms, your doctor can tell them by pelvic examination. Sometimes, they bulge out from your lower abdomen even you don't have symptoms. To confirm diagnosis, the doctor will do ultrasound scan, hysteroscopic examination, laparoscopic examination, MRI or CT scans.

Ultrasound scan

There are 2 types of ultrasound used for diagnosis of fibroids:

1. Abdominal Pelvic 2. Transvaginal
This uses a probe. The sonographer applies a "cold" gel on your tummy then presses the probe to the abdomen to get an image.
Before the scan, you will be asked to drink up to 1 litre of water, hold it and only empty the bladder after she/he finishes the scan.
This uses a wand which is inserted into the vagina to produce an image. This type of scan should be painless unless there is a large fibroid causing abdominal tenderness which makes you feel some discomfort.

Hysteroscopic examination

A procedure to look inside the womb under local or general anaesthetic.

A surgeon inserts into the vagina a tiny telescope that is attached to a camera.

A picture is shown on the monitor. At the same time, the gynaecologist may look for polyps and also take a small sample of the lining of the womb for testing.

This test is often used together with ultrasound scan to confirm diagnosis.

Laparoscopic examination

Under general anaesthetics, the gynaecologist makes a small cut in the abdomen near the navel (belly button) and then inserts a laparoscope (a tube with a light and camera). This allows him/her to look at the size & shape of the outside of the womb and other organs on the monitor. Pictures may also be taken.

Sometimes, air is pumped into the abdomen as part of the procedure which can leave you feel bloated.

This procedure takes approx 30 minutes.

Often, it is used together with ultrasound to confirm diagnosis.

For a more detailed description of this laparoscopic procedure including how to prepare for the this test, click here.

MRI and CT

These techniques will only be used when the ultrasound scans have not given a clear result or when a more detailed information is required.

MRT & CT are not normally used as first choice for confirmation of fibroids.

Last updated on Monday 1 February 2021 11:57 am.