Women who endure painful periods and ongoing pelvic pain may be experiencing symptoms of endometriosis.This disorder can cause a variety of issues that range from mild to severe. In this article, we will look at the signs and symptoms associated with endometriosis and treatment options for those who are diagnosed.
What Is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a disorder in which tissue grows outside of the uterine cavity. This tissue is similar to the endometrium, which is the tissue that forms the lining of the uterus. This condition occurs when the harmful tissue begins to grow on the ovaries, bowel, and the tissue that lines the pelvis. While it is not common for this tissue to grow outside of the uterus, it is possible. If that occurs, the condition is known as an endometrial implant.
People with endometriosis will experience pain and inflammation during their menstrual cycle as hormone changes are occurring. These changes cause the tissue to grow and thicken as well as break down over time. Eventually, the tissue that breaks down will not have anywhere to go, and it becomes trapped inside the pelvis.
What Are the Symptoms of Endometriosis?
Endometriosis symptoms can vary. Some women will only experience mild symptoms while others can have more severe pain and other issues. Some people with mild cases of endometriosis will experience even more pain than those with a severe case.
Here are some of the general symptoms of endometriosis that most patients experience with the disorder:
- Extremely painful periods
- Cramps that occur one or two weeks before or after menstruation
- Discomfort with bowel movements
- Pain that occurs in the lower abdomen before or during menstruation
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Bleeding between periods
- Pain after intercourse
- Lower back pain that occurs during menstruation
Keep in mind that you can have endometriosis and not experience any symptoms. Keep up with your routine gynecological exams, as your gynecologist can determine if there are any issues and perform tests that will determine if you have endometriosis.
What Treatment Is Available for Endometriosis?
Endometriosis can disrupt your everyday life if it is left untreated. While there is no cure for the condition, the symptoms are manageable. Treatment can help ease the pain and discomfort you experience.
Some simple medical treatment options, such as pain medication or hormone therapy, can help with endometriosis symptoms. Some doctors will prescribe birth control pills or patches to balance out the hormones and eliminate pain.
If those treatment options do not help to alleviate the pain, your doctor may suggest surgery. Conservative surgery is a good option for women who still want to get pregnant but experience severe pain with endometriosis and have not found relief with other treatment options. Laparoscopy is a good treatment option because it is minimally invasive and allows the doctor to visualize and accurately diagnose the condition. If no treatment options work, a hysterectomy may be suggested.
Along with its physical side effects, endometriosis can also have an impact on mental health. Because it can cause fertility issues, the diagnosis can be difficult for many women planning to start a family. Finding a support group or learning more about the many treatment options available is a great way to cope with the physical and mental issues associated with this disorder.
Contact BASS Medical Group for More Information
BASS Medical Group offers a wide range of medical services that assist in diagnosing and treating your health issues. For more information about what we offer the residents of Stockton and surrounding areas, get in touch with us today.