Endometriosis is a painful disorder of the tissues, which line the inner side of the uterus known as endometrium, starts growing outside the uterus, it is known as endometrial implant. Endometriosis includes the ovaries and bowl or lining of pelvis. In some cases the endometrial tissues also spread outside of the pelvic region.
The displaced tissues in endometriosis continue to act like normal tissues. But it becomes thicker and then break out with leakage of blood during menstruation, because these displaced tissues find no way out and trap in your body. In ovaries it forms a cyst known as endometriomas. The surrounding tissues cause irritation and then develops a scar and adhesion.
During period Endometriosis causes severe pain, additionally fertility problems also arises. But luckily, treatments are available to cure endometriosis.
Symptoms of Endometriosis
It is characterized by pelvic pain especially during menstruation. The pain with cramps is normal during menstruation but pain due to endometriosis is far more worsen then normal case. It is also reported that the pain increases with the passage of time. Other symptoms may include:
- Dysmenorrhea (Painful periods): the pelvic pain starts before periods and may extends for longer time. Additionally the abdominal pain and pain in lower back may arise.
- Pain with intercourse: endometriosis is characterized by pain during or after having sex.
- Pain with bowel movements or urination: these symptoms can be easily felt during periods.
- Excessive bleeding: the individual may experience menorrhagia condition in which heavy periods occur and menometrorrhagia the bleeding periods.
- Infertility: it was first diagnosed in women who are looking for infertility.
- Other symptoms: in addition to the above mentioned symptoms you may have diarrhoea, fatigue, nausea, constipation during menstruation.
The intensity of the pain is not related with the extent of endometriosis. Most of the women having mild endometriosis have severe pain while advance level endometriosis may have no pain or little pain.
It is sometimes misleadingly handled as a pain due to some other pain causing diseases such as pelvic inflammatory problems or cyst formation at ovary. In addition to this it may also be confused with IBS the common irritable bowel syndrome, a condition which causes constipation, diarrhoea and severe abdominal pain. All these conditions complicate the diagnosis of endometriosis.
Causes of Endometriosis
The real cause of the endometriosis is still a mystery but several problems may be associated due to:
- Menstruation Retrograde: This is known to be the best reason of endometriosis. During menstruation the blood consisting of endometrial cells starts flowing through the fallopian tube down in to the pelvic cavity instead of running out of the body. These endometrial cells may stick to the pelvic region where they start growing and become thicker, and then bleeding occurs during each menstrual cycle.
- Primary cell growth: The embryonic cells provide the cells lining of pelvic and abdominal region. The endometriosis can develop when one or more of the abdominal lining transforms in to endometrial tissues.
- Operating scratch implantation: This happens when after surgery like C-section or hysterectomy the endometrial cells attached during the surgical incision.
- Endometrial tissues or cells transport: As the blood is flowing throughout the body it may transport the endometrial cells to other body parts as well.
- Defense system disorder: Due to imbalance in the body’s defence system the body become unable to identify and terminate to endometrial tissues.
The common risk factors associated with endometriosis are:
- Individuals who didn’t give a birth are at high risk
- If your family members have endometriosis
- The medical conditions which are known to prevent the menstruation
- The pelvic infection may induce the endometriosis
- The abnormalities in the uterine
The endometriosis normally develops many years after menarche the menstruation. The normal signs and symptoms fade during pregnancy period and diminishes with the menopause.
Treatments and drugs
The treatment for endometriosis includes both medication and surgery. The choice of treatment depends on the severity of the condition and also depends on the desire to get pregnant. But normally doctors also prescribe the medications and surgery refers as the last hope.
The doctors normally recommended that you must take the pain reliever like non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, naproxen or ibuprofen. These medicines will help you to release the pain due to cramps. However, if you think that it doesn’t make a difference then you need take other medicines or change the dose as well.
The supplemental hormones are known to relieve you against the pain due to endometriosis. This is just because the rise and fall in the hormones during menstruation causes the thickness of the endometrial implant and as a result cause bleeding. The common hormone therapies known to treat the endometriosis include: Hormonal contraceptives, Medroxyprogesterone (Depo-Provera), Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (Gn-RH) antagonists and agonists, Danazol.
The conservative surgery is helpful in case when you are pregnant and want to remove the maximum endometriosis to preserve the ovaries and uterus. Additionally if the pain is unbearable due to endometriosis then you can also get benefits from surgery. The surgery can be performed either through the laparoscopically or with the help of traditional surgery in complicated cases. During laparoscopic surgery the doctor insert a cylinder type instrument through the incision lying near your naval and hence remove the endometrial tissues to give you relieve.
Complications of Endometriosis
The common complications as a result of endometriosis are infertility and ovarian cancer, proper treatment is necessary to cure you and to give you a better future. Almost one third of the women having endometriosis are unable to get normal pregnancy. Additionally it was observed that the ovarian cancer occurs at faster rates in women having endometriosis. Most of the studies suggest that the high rate of ovarian cancer is due to the endometriosis. But the real cause are still unknown. Always consult with your doctor in case of any complication and severe abdominal pain.