Pain During Intercourse: A Sign of Uterine Fibroids
Pain during sexual intercourse, or dyspareunia, is persistent or recurring pain just before, during, or after sex. Women may experience pain externally, in the vulvar region, to the labia, or at the opening of the vagina. Some will feel it internally, in the cervix, uterus, or lower abdomen. Unfortunately, the reality is that uterine fibroids can cause pain during sex, which can also lead to negative emotional and psychological effects.
If you are dealing with painful intercourse, you should consider being evaluated for fibroids. Getting an early diagnosis can help to relieve your symptoms more quickly and let you get back to your normal routine. Our affiliated physicians at American Fibroid Centers provide minimally invasive-image guided fibroid treatment for fibroids and their common symptoms, including pain during sex.
Symptoms of Pain During Intercourse
The most common symptom experienced by women with dyspareunia is pain with intercourse that occurs at the vaginal opening or deep in the pelvis. It can be a distinct pain in one area or throughout the entire genital region. Having sex with uterine fibroids can be difficult or uncomfortable due to other issues as well. If you have fibroids, you may also feel the following:
- Sharp pain during penetration or at entry
- Deep pain during thrusting
- Burning sensations
- Pelvic cramping
- Throbbing or aching after intercourse
- Muscle tightness or spasms
Causes of Pain During Intercourse
Pain during intercourse can affect women for many different reasons, including physical problems, gynecological conditions, and emotional issues. Uterine fibroids often cause painful sex due to their size and location. Larger fibroids can create a constant pressure — both in the uterus and against surrounding organs — that increases during sex. Common causes of this symptom include:
- Ovarian cysts
- Vaginal infections, such as yeast infections
- Uterine fibroids
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
- Ectopic pregnancy
Find out if you are at risk for Uterine Fibroids.
How Do Fibroids Cause Pain During Intercourse?
Uterine fibroids located near the cervix are often responsible for pain during sexual intercourse. Pressure placed on these benign growths can cause anything from mild discomfort to excruciating pain and for some, friction can also be a factor. If you start experimenting with different sex positions, you may find that some are more comfortable or painful than others.
Fibroids can impact sexual health and enjoyment in ways other than causing pain. Vaginal dryness, irregular periods, fatigue due to anemia, frequent urination, and bloating all may individually or collectively diminish your desire for sex. If you’ve been diagnosed with fibroids and are experiencing painful intercourse that is affecting your personal life and self-esteem, we encourage you to seek treatment with an American Fibroid Centers’ affiliated physician.
Treatment for Pain During Intercourse
Pain during sex does not always require medical treatment. If you’ve recently given birth, you should wait at least six weeks before attempting intercourse. In most cases, all you need to do is practice patience and gentleness. If your symptoms are related to uterine fibroids, there are certain ways to help relieve them.
Lifestyle Changes & Medications
If dryness is the main cause, it can be helpful to apply a water-based lubricant to your vagina, vulva, and labia. Those who have pain during sex often stop using vaginal perfumes, bubble baths or scented sanitary pads, or scented toilet paper.
UFE Procedure: Minimally Invasive Fibroid Treatment
If uterine fibroids are the cause of your painful sex, Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE) is the ideal treatment option. UFE is a minimally invasive-image guided procedure that gets rid of fibroids while preserving the uterus. Undergoing UFE will also alleviate your pain during intercourse.
What to Expect from UFE
Our Fibroid Specialists
The American Fibroid Centers’ affiliated physicians are board certified and have extensive experience in treating uterine fibroids. Our team strives to deliver the best outcome possible for your condition. They will work closely with you to confirm a fibroid diagnosis and create an individualized care plan that suits your needs.
What Our Patients Are Saying
Learn more about our patients’ experiences at American Fibroid Centers.
From the Experts
Get to know more about the symptoms, causes, treatment, and care of Uterine Fibroids.