Fibroids are benign (non-cancerous) growths that grow on or in the muscle layer of the womb. They are common in women aged between 25 and 45 years. A single fibroid can be the size of a pea or as large as a melon. Small fibroids may not cause any symptoms at all, but the larger they get the more problems they can cause such as heavy periods or bleeding between periods.

St Anthony’s Hospital, Cheam, Surrey (, will be holding a free special awareness evening about fibroids on Thursday 20 May at 6.30pm at St Bede’s Conference Centre in the hospital grounds. Guest speakers Mr Khaled Aba-Oub, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist and Dr Kashif Burney, consultant radiologist will explain the condition, what causes it, discuss the various treatment options and answer questions.

It’s thought that fibroids grow in response to the female hormone oestrogen and tend to shrink after the menopause as oestrogen levels decline. The choice of treatment depends on the size and location of the fibroids. Surgical options include hysterectomy but this may not be acceptable for women still intending to have children. Other options include myomectomy surgery to remove the fibroids while preserving the uterus. A newer approach is the uterine artery embolisation (UAE), performed under local anaesthetic where a catheter is inserted into the arteries that feed the uterus. Small particles are fed into the catheter to reduce the blood supply to the fibroids, which then shrink. These procedures will be discussed at the awareness evening.

For more information, please telephone 0208 335 4557 or e-mail