Endometriosis: The Facts

January 30, 2016

Back in 2014 I wrote a ridiculously long post all about endometriosis and what I’d been though. It really was a ridiculously long post and while I loved every word I wrote I felt in hindsight that it was just too lengthy and contained too much information so I’ve decided to break it down and try and make it more relevant.

Endometriosis really doesn’t receive the attention that it deserves and I wanted to put this out there for young girls and woman who suffer from heavy painful periods and other symptoms that could mean you have Endometriosis. To make people aware and for people to know they are not alone!

“Endometriosis (pronounced end – oh – mee – tree – oh – sis) is the name given to the condition where cells like the ones in the lining of the womb (uterus) are found elsewhere in the body.

Every month your body goes through hormonal changes. You naturally release hormones which cause the lining of the womb to increase in preparation for a fertilised egg. If pregnancy does not occur, this lining will break down and bleed. The blood is then released from your body as a period.

Endometriosis cells react in the same way – except that they are located outside your womb. During your monthly cycle your hormones stimulate the endometriosis, causing it to grow, then break down and bleed. This internal bleeding, unlike a period, has no way of leaving the body. This leads to inflammation, pain, and the formation of scar tissue (adhesions). Endometrial tissue can also be found in the ovary, where it can form cysts, called ‘chocolate cysts’ because of their appearance.

Endometriosis is not an infection.
Endometriosis is not contagious.
Endometriosis is not cancer.

The actual cause of endometriosis is unknown. There are several theories, but none fully explains why the condition occurs. Some women experience symptoms while others do not. The symptoms of endometriosis can vary in intensity.

Common symptoms:

  • Painful, heavy, or irregular periods 
  • Pain during or after sex 
  • Infertility 
  • Problems on opening bowels 
  • Fatigue 
  • The individual circumstances of the woman 
  • Her age 
  • The severity of her symptoms 
  • Her desire to have children 
  • The severity of the disease

If you have any of these symptoms please see your Dr. I would also recommend you keeping a note of all your symptoms and the dates these symptoms occur.

The amount of endometriosis does not always correspond to the amount of pain and discomfort. A small amount of endometriosis can be more painful than severe disease. It depends, largely, where the endometriosis is actually growing inside the body.

All of the symptoms above may have other causes. It is important to seek medical advice to clarify the cause of any symptoms you may experience. If your symptoms change after diagnosis it is important to discuss these changes with a medical practitioner. It is easy to attribute all your problems to endometriosis but it may not always be the cause of your symptoms.

Currently, there is no cure for endometriosis. The different treatments available aim to reduce the severity of symptoms and improve the quality of life for a woman living with the condition.
The type of treatment should be decided in partnership between her and her healthcare professional.
The decision about which treatment to choose should depend on several factors:

The treatments currently available can help by relieving pain symptoms; shrinking or slowing endometriosis growth; preserving or restoring fertility; or preventing/delaying the recurrence of the disease.” (Information provided by Endometriosis UK)

Treatments for Endometriosis can vary but the main treatments can be pain management, hormones, surgery and nutrition.

If you have any of these symptoms, please don’t hesitate to contact you G.P and it’s always good to keep a note of your symptoms and the dates they occur.

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