Posts for tag: Endometriosis
Endometriosis is a gynecological condition affecting millions of American women of child-bearing years. An extreme overgrowth of the lining of the uterus (endometrium), this painful and persistent malady leaves some women infertile, in pain and even debilitated from the symptoms. Are you one of them? A visit with your OB/GYN doctor will uncover the reasons and treatments for your endometriosis.
Symptoms of endometriosis
The most frequent symptom is severe cramping before, during and after menstruation. Periods may be unusually long in duration or very short. Lower back pain and migraine headaches occur through out the monthly cycle, and many women report difficulty with bowel movements and a feeling of "heaviness"in the lower abdomen.
Some sufferers of endometriosis experience weight gain and unfortunately...infertility. Endometriosis can block the fallopian tubes and interior of the uterus so sperm cannot reach and fertilize eggs. Endometrial tissue often appears in odd areas such as on the ovaries or the bowel.
Who gets endometriosis?
The Office on Women's Health reports that a full 11 percent of women between the ages of 15 and 44 suffer with endometriosis. The condition appears to run in families, and it is common among women who have never had children. Autoimmune conditions such as allergies, MS and Lupus often co-exist with endometriosis.
Finding and treating endometriosis
Reporting your symptoms of endometriosis to your obstetrician/gynecologist is critical to diagnosis and treatment. He or she will perform a pelvic examination and may do ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging.
Treatment options vary, but frankly, surgery usually is not a first choice. Medical management with hormones and pain medications is preferable. Your OB/GYN will want to monitor your symptoms and treatment plan closely to help you manage this often-frustrating condition.
In addition, many women experience significant symptom relief if they:
- Exercise regularly.
- Deep breathe through periods of abdominal or lower back pain.
- Manage stress levels and the amount of cortisol, the stress hormone, in the bloodstream.
- Eat more vegetables and fruits, and reduce gluten and refined sugars which produce inflammatory reactions in the abdomen.
There are many reasons why you may be experiencing abdominal pain, from minor issues to long-term diseases. It can be difficult to figure out what could be the cause of your pain but this is why you should always turn to your gynecologist for help. Your abdominal pain may just be caused by endometriosis, one of the most commonly diagnosed gynecological conditions.
What is endometriosis?
This female disorder is characterized by an overgrowth of uterine tissue whereby the tissue can actually develop on the ovaries, pelvis or fallopian tubes. This tissue, regardless of where it is growing, reacts the same way that regular uterine tissue does. It will thicken, deteriorate and bleed during menstruation; however, because this tissue is not supposed to grow on other reproductive structures there is no way for this tissue to be released. This ultimately leads to scar tissue on these organs.
What are the symptoms of endometriosis?
One of the most common symptoms is abdominal pain that gets worse during menstruation. You may notice this pain before your period and it may last a few days past your period. The pain may be so severe that it radiates to your lower back.
Your period may also be heavier than normal periods and you may experience breakthrough bleeding between periods.
Women often don’t realize that they have endometriosis until they have difficulty trying to conceive and come in for an evaluation. Other symptoms of endometriosis include pain during intercourse, bloating, nausea and fatigue, which often flare-up during your period.
When to seek care?
If you are experiencing any symptoms that are indicative of endometriosis it’s important that you seek medical attention right away. The sooner you seek care and treatment the better. Endometriosis if often treated with a combination of medications, therapy, and surgery. If you’ve been diagnosed with endometriosis, we will discuss your treatment options to help you determine which ones are right for you.
If you are dealing with unexplained abdominal pain it’s important that you turn to an OBGYN that you trust. If you do have endometriosis it’s crucial to get a diagnosis as soon as possible so we can provide you with the treatment you need to feel better.