What is anteverted uterus with thickened endometrium
where is the uterus located? Anatomy, function, related diseases
What is the womb?
The uterus is an organ of the female reproductive system. It is shaped like an upside-down pear and has thick walls. The main function of the uterus is to house and feed a fetus until it is ready to give birth.
Where is the uterus in the body?
The uterus sits in the middle of the pelvis, behind the bladder, and in front of the rectum. The actual position of the uterus within the pelvis varies from person to person. Each position has its own name:
- Antverted uterus. An anteverted uterus tilts forward slightly.
- Retroverted uterus. A retroverted uterus bends back slightly.
Both positions are normal, and the position of the uterus can change during a woman's life, most commonly after pregnancy.
Anatomy and function
The fundus is the upper part of the uterus. It is broad and curved. The fallopian tubes are attached to the uterus just below the fundus.
The corpus is the main body of the uterus. It is very muscular and can stretch to accommodate a developing fetus. During labor, the muscular walls of the body contract to push the baby through the cervix and vagina.
The body is lined by a mucous membrane called the endometrium. This membrane responds to the reproductive hormones by changing its thickness with each menstrual cycle. When an egg is fertilized, it attaches to the endometrium. If fertilization does not occur, the endometrium loses its outer layer of cells that are released during menstruation.
The section of the uterus between the body and the cervix is called the isthmus. This is where the walls of the uterus begin to narrow towards the cervix.
The cervix is the lowest part of the uterus. It is lined with a smooth mucous membrane and connects the uterus with the vagina. Glands in the lining of the uterus usually produce a thick layer of mucus. However, during ovulation it becomes thinner so that the sperm can easily get into the uterus.
The cervix consists of three main parts:
- Endocervix. This is the inner part of the cervix that leads to the uterus.
- Cervical canal. The cervical canal connects the uterus to the vagina.
- Excervix. The excervix is the outer part of the cervix that protrudes into the vagina.
During childbirth, the cervix expands (widens) so the baby can walk through the birth canal.
Uterine conditions -Diseases related to the uterus
Congenital uterine disease
The word innate refers to something a person is born with. According to the March of Dimes, about 1 in 300 women are born with a congenital uterine disease. In some cases, congenital uterine diseases cause pregnancy complications.
Some examples of congenital uterine diseases are:
- Septate uterus. A ligament of muscles divides the uterus into two separate sections.
- Bicornuate uterus. The uterus has two smaller cavities instead of one large one.
- Didelphic womb. The uterus has two smaller cavities, each with its own cervix.
- Unicornuate uterus. Only half of the uterus is formed.
Endometriosis occurs when the endometrium, which usually lines the uterus, grows on the outside of the uterus, fallopian tubes, or pelvic lining. It can cause severe pain, especially during menstruation or intercourse.
Uterine fibroids are non-cancerous growths on the walls of the uterus. They can range in size from very small (the size of a seed) to quite large (the size of an orange). While fibroids don't always cause symptoms, some women experience bleeding and pain. In addition, larger animals can also lead to fertility problems in some cases.
A prolapse occurs when the supporting system of an organ is stretched or damaged. A prolapsed uterus occurs when part of the uterus slips into the vagina. In severe cases, part of the uterus may protrude from the vaginal opening. Many things can cause this, including childbirth, surgery, menopause, or extreme physical activity.
Pelvic inflammatory disease
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is an infection of the female genital organs. It's sometimes caused by the same bacteria that cause gonorrhea and chlamydia, although other bacteria can cause it too.
The main symptoms of PID are pain in the lower abdomen and pain during intercourse and urination. Other possible symptoms include unusual vaginal discharge, tiredness, and irregular bleeding. If left untreated, PID can lead to infertility and an increased risk of ectopic pregnancy.
While uterine cancer can start anywhere in the uterus, it is most common in the endometrium. Several things can increase a woman's risk of developing cervical cancer, including being obese and taking estrogen without progesterone.
Cancer can also affect the cells of the cervix and cause cervical cancer. Doctors aren't sure about the exact causes and risk factors for cervical cancer, but smoking and sexually transmitted infections both seem to be a factor, in addition to a weak immune system.
Symptoms of a uterine problem
The symptoms of many uterine diseases share a few key symptoms, including:
- very hard times
- Bleeding between periods
- unusual or malodorous vaginal discharge
- Pelvic or lower back pain
- Painful menstruation or sexual intercourse
- Pain when urinating or having a bowel movement
Contact your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms. With the help of your medical history and physical exam, they can help narrow down what could be causing it.
Tips for a healthy uterus
The uterus is an important organ with many moving parts. Follow these tips to maintain health:
Get routine pap smears
Pap smears can detect precancerous changes in your cervix as well as other uterine diseases. The American Cancer Society recommends:
- All women between the ages of 21 and 29 have a Pap smear every three years.
- Women who are 30 years or older will have a Pap smear every five years until they are 65 years old, along with a human papillomavirus (HPV) test, even if they have been vaccinated against HPV.
- Women over 65 will stop having Pap smears if they have had regular smears for the past 10 years, unless they are at a higher risk of developing uterine cancer.
Get vaccinated against HPV.
The HPV vaccine protects against nine strains. It is available for women between the ages of 9 and 26 years. According to the FDA, the vaccine can prevent up to 90 percent of cervical, vaginal, and anal cancers.
Use a condom
Using a condom during intercourse helps prevent the spread of STIs, which can increase a woman's risk of developing PID or cervical cancer.
Smoking has been linked to certain types of cervical cancer.
The following types of foods are known to help keep the cervix healthy and boost the immune system:
- Foods high in folic acid, such as asparagus, broccoli, and other green vegetables.
- Foods that are high in vitamin C, such as oranges and grapefruits.
- Foods high in beta-carotene, such as carrots, pumpkin, and cantaloupe.
- Foods that are high in vitamin E, such as whole grain breads and cereals
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