Endometriosis is a very painful medical condition experienced by some women in their fertility age. Most women have their menstruation cycle after a gap of about 28 days. It is often observed that period can be regular or not, depending on various health issues – PCOS, Diet and Weight fluctuations, Stress and Endometriosis. Endometriosis is a painful health condition in which the tissues which grow inside the uterus that shed during a period cycle start to grow outside. In this article we shall touch upon some Endometriosis – symptoms, causes and treatment.
WHAT IS ENDOMETRIOSIS:
Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue develops outside of the uterine lining. The lining developed outside resembles the endometrium. When extra tissue forms on your ovaries and the tissues that line your pelvic, you are likely to be diagnosed with endometriosis. Endometrial-like tissue rarely spreads outside the pelvic area, but it can happen.
According to the research, Endometriosis affects around 1 out of every 10 women. Although it is common and its symptoms can harm one’s quality of life, most women who suffer from endometriosis are not aware of this disease. They wait years for a correct diagnosis as it is often confused with normal period pain. It is very essential to know about Endometriosis – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment Options available.
Body Parts affected by Endometriosis –
Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to the uterine lining develops outside of your uterus. It simply spreads to different body tissues and parts where it doesn’t belong.
Endometriosis is found on –
- Fallopian tubes
- Tissue and organs that hold the uterus in position
- The uterus’s external surface
Other locations of tissue growth include –
Endometriosis can affect other regions of the body, including the lungs, brain and skin.
Is Endometriosis Cancer?
Endometriosis is a severe and an alarming condition. Cells known as endometrial cells start developing outside the uterus. Other organs of the reproductive system, such as the cervix and ovaries, are also involved. However, Endometriosis is not cancerous or lethal.
A better understanding of the endometriosis – symptoms, causes and treatment options is vital for all women between ages 11 to 50.
It can lead to issues such as:
- Tiredness and severe weakness
- Intestine and urinary issues
- Severe Menstrual cramps
- Menstrual flow that is thicker and lasts longer
Stages of Endometriosis –
Endometriosis is divided into four stages or kinds. It might be any of the following options:
Several factors define the stages of endometriosis. These characteristics include the location, quantity, size, and depth of endometrial implants.
Stage 1: (Minimal)
The minimal stage is defined by minor sores on your ovaries. It can further lead to superficial endometrial implants. There might also be inflammation in or around your pelvic cavity.
Stage 2: (Mild)
On the ovaries and pelvic lining, mild endometriosis manifests itself as light lesions and superficial implants.
Stage 3: (Moderate)
Moderate endometriosis is characterized by several deep implants on your ovaries and pelvic walls. There may potentially be other lesions.
Stage 4: (Severe)
Endometriosis at its most severe level comprises several deep implants on your vaginal lining and ovaries. Your fallopian tubes and bowels may also have lesions. There might also be cysts on one or both of your ovaries.
The symptoms of endometriosis are not starkly evident in the earlier stages as they can vary depending on the region and complexity of the condition. Some women are severely impacted, while others show no visible signs.
Most widely endometriosis symptoms may include:
The most prevalent symptom is pain. Endometriosis can cause a variety of pain symptoms in women. These are some examples:
- Menstrual cramps that are excruciatingly severe. The discomfort may worsen over time.
- Chronic lower back and pelvic pain
- Intestinal discomfort
- During menstrual cycles, you may experience painful bowel movements or urination. In rare situations, blood may be seen in your urine.
Bleeding in between menstrual cycles This might be due to a condition other than endometriosis. If this occurs frequently, you should consult your doctor.
Infertility can be caused by endometriosis. Getting pregnant may require extra treatment through hormonal therapy.
These symptoms include:
Stomach issues-particularly happen during menstruation.
Endometriosis – Causes:
There are several causes which can lead to Endometriosis –
1) RETROGRADE MENSTRUATION:
Menstrual blood containing endometrial cells travels back via the fallopian tubes and into the pelvic cavity. This backward flow is known as retrograde menstruation. These endometrial cells are attached to the pelvic walls and organ surfaces. Throughout a menstrual cycle, they grow, clot, and bleed. The main cause of endometriosis is retrograde menstrual flow.
2) EMBRYONIC CELL DIFFERENTIATION:
Hormones like estrogen can change embryonic cells. During puberty, cells in the early phases of development become endometrial-like cell implants.
3) SURGICAL SCAR IMPLANTATION:
During an abdominal surgery or a cesarean, endometrial tissue may be picked up and relocated by accident. Endometrial tissue, for instance, has been discovered in abdominal scars.
Endometriosis may be inherited through the genes since it runs in families.
5) DEFECTIVE IMMUNE SYSTEM:
A weak immune system may fail to detect and eliminate endometrial tissue developing outside of the uterus. Immune system diseases and some cancers are more frequent in endometriosis patients.
Endometriosis – Treatment:
There are medical and surgical options advised by doctors to treat endometriosis. Every option assists you to manage your symptoms and any potential problems. Therapies may be tried initially by your doctor. If your problem does not improve, they may propose surgery.
Among the treatment possibilities are:
HORMONE REPLACEMENT TREATMENT:
Taking hormone supplements can occasionally ease the pain. Furtherly it can slow the growth of cells. Hormone treatment assists your body in regulating the monthly hormonal fluctuations that encourage endometriosis tissue development.
Hormone therapy can decrease the proliferation of endometrial cells and, presumably, relieve discomfort.
The Hormone treatment options include –
Combined oral contraceptive pill (COC):
These pills are useful in inducing menstruation and alleviate discomfort.
To relieve pain and shrink endometrial tissue.
Gonadotrophin Releasing Hormone (GnRH):
It is used to control ovulation and endometrial tissue development.
Ask your doctor about how they operate and the potential adverse effects of each. This will assist you in determining which treatment is best for you.
You can try over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, but keep in mind that they aren’t always effective.
Surgery is the most effective method. It repairs any damage and reduces the likelihood of it recurring. Surgery may also boost your chances of conceiving.
TYPES OF SURGERY:
Depending on your condition, you may require different forms of surgery.
Laparoscopy is a type of keyhole surgery. Doctors do Laparoscopy via the belly. The surgeon then uses the laparoscope to see inside the abdomen and remove endometriosis tissue.
For more severe endometriosis, a laparotomy is open surgery.
In severe circumstances, a hysterectomy is the only alternative. In this surgery, the Removal of the uterus takes place.
Finding respite from symptoms is critical for women attempting to manage the disease. Fortunately, there are several home treatments available to help alleviate symptoms quickly. You can try the following to help relieve period pain:
Apply a heating pad or heat patch to your lower abdomen, or soak in a warm bath.
Exercising during your period may help alleviate cramping.
Massage your stomach and lower back to relieve discomfort.
Extra sleep during the week before your period helps with mood fluctuations.
Maintain a well-balanced Diet:
More fruits and vegetables, as well as protein, can help reduce period bloating and discomfort.
Drinking enough water might help reduce period bloating.
As a result of their endometriosis, some women suffer nausea. Ginger tea is one of the most effective home treatments for nausea. It is both safe and effective, according to research.
You can also minimize symptoms by increasing your intake of anti-inflammatory foods.
Foods to eat more of include:
- Vegetables with green leaves
Endometriosis once diagnosed needs proper and regular monitoring. Even if you have gone though a surgical procedure or are on medication, it is advisable to visit your doctor once every 6 months. There is a chance that the endometrial tissue may grow back after a few years, hence it is best to monitor and control it. After understanding endometriosis – symptoms, causes and treatment options, there is little to fear of this health condition as it is manageable through proper care.
A woman’s body is a gift from God. But we need to look after it in order to experience this cherished gift!