A range of treatments including surgery and medications is effective for removing or shrinking uterine fibroids, but a woman should discuss her individual needs and preferences with her doctor before choosing a treatment, according to a new AHRQ report. About 26 million U.S. women between 15 and 50 have at least one uterine fibroid, which is a growth that forms in the uterine muscle. Fibroids are noncancerous but can cause severe pain, cramping, excessive bleeding and anemia. Treatment choices often are made according to a woman’s age and desire to maintain her fertility, as several treatments can cause infertility. AHRQ’s report also reviewed evidence about the risk of spreading an unsuspected cancer of the uterus during uterine fibroid surgery. Evidence shows the use of a power morcellator – an instrument that divides and removes tissue masses during laparoscopic surgery – might spread a hidden cancer and reduce survival odds.