Endometriosis is a common but painful ailment that can affect your daily life. When you have endometriosis, tissue that resembles the uterine lining grows in additional locations in your belly and pelvis. In addition to fertility problems, it can result in painful, protracted periods.
Who is susceptible to endometriosis?
People between the ages of 25 and 40 are most frequently affected by the disorder known as endometriosis. Younger individuals can experience it during their adolescent years. Even though its symptoms are often relieved after menopause, it can still be painful and uncomfortable.
Why does the disease occur?
Endometriosis has no recognised cause. Tissue that resembles the lining of your uterus grows in the incorrect locations when you have endometriosis.
It can result in painful symptoms when it grows in organs such as the exterior of your uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries, gut, and within your pelvic cavity. Increased inflammation, fibrosis, and adhesions are all contributing factors to this pain.
Scar tissue can develop as endometrial-like tissue spreads outside of the uterus (adhesions). Your organs may fuse together as a result of these scar tissue patches, forming connections between them that otherwise wouldn’t exist. Pain and discomfort may result from this.
What endometriosis signs and symptoms are there?
Endometriosis is associated with a variety of symptoms. Pain is the predominant symptom. It is possible for this pain to be slight or severe. Those who do have its symptoms may have:
- Terribly uncomfortable menstruation cramps.
- Back ache or stomach pain before, during, or after your period
- Pain during sex
- Heavy bleeding during periods or spotting (light bleeding) between periods
- Unpleasant bowel motions
How is endometriosis identified?
A diagnosis of endometriosis frequently begins with your symptoms. You might contact your doctor if you have painful or heavy periods. When you first arrive for your consultation, your doctor could ask you about your personal medical history, any past pregnancies, and whether anybody else in your family have it.
Your doctor might perform a pelvic exam. If your healthcare professional wants further details, they’ll probably start with an ultrasound before moving on to pelvic imaging. An MRI may also be prescribed for additional endometriosis mapping, depending on your symptoms, the results of the physical examination, and the ultrasound results.
Both a laparoscopy for a conclusive diagnosis and therapeutic options are possible. Because your surgeon doing the surgery can use a small camera (laparoscope) to examine within your body, it can be a great technique to confirm endometriosis. A biopsy may be collected during this technique. A lab will receive the biopsy to verify the diagnosis.
Occasionally it can be discovered by chance. Not every patient will suffer symptoms. In certain circumstances, your provider may find the condition during a different procedure.
What is the treatment for endometriosis?
Your healthcare provider will help create your treatment plan for endometriosis based on a few factors, including:
- The severity of your endometriosis
- Your plans for future pregnancies
- Your age
- The severity of your symptoms (often pain)
Medications for the pain relief can include:
- Over-the-counter pain relief
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
In some cases, your provider might recommend you, surgery as a way to confirm and treat it.
Surgical options to treat endometriosis include:
Laparoscopy: In this procedure, your surgeon will make a very small cut in your and insert a thin tube-like tool called a laparoscope into your body. Additional 5-millimeter instruments can then be used to excise and remove lesions.
Hysterectomy: Depending on the degree of endometriosis and scar tissue present, your doctor may recommend removing your uterus in extreme situations. If you want to become fertile in the future despite having adenomyosis or other uterine issues.
You may endure heavy periods, long-lasting (chronic) pain, and trouble getting pregnant as a result of endometriosis. Working with your healthcare practitioner, you can control these symptoms. Speak with your doctor if you experience any endometriosis symptoms or if your periods seem strange or unpleasant. There are therapies that can help you live a better life and long-term manage your disease.