New Directions in the Epidemiology of Uterine Fibroids

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Although uterine leiomyomata (fibroids) have been the leading indication for hysterectomy in the United States for decades, the epidemiological data on fibroid prevalence and risk factors are limited. Given the hormonal dependence of fibroids, most earlier studies focused on reproductive or hormonal factors. Recent analyses have extended that focus to other areas. We present previously unpublished data on the association between reproductive tract infections and fibroids that highlight the need for more detailed studies. Our review suggests that metabolic, dietary, stress, and environmental factors may also play a role in fibroid development.

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