Endometriosis is among the most common reproductive health conditions for women. According to statistics collected the Department of Health & Human Services, roughly 11% of women will experience some degree of endometriosis in their lifetime. It is especially common for women between the ages of 30 – 40. Endometriosis is strongly associated with pain that results from tissue of the uterine lining growing outside the uterus, but it can also affect women in other ways too.
In addition to the pain caused by endometriosis, the condition is also a major contributor to infertility in women. It can also increase a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer. That’s why a speedy diagnosis and start of treatment is important for women with endometriosis. To help women identify endometriosis before their condition becomes more serious, our healthcare providers wanted to provide this list of symptoms to be aware of:
- Throbbing pelvic pain or unusual cramping that typically begins just before your period and extends several days into your menstrual cycle (also during or just after having sex).
- Experiencing pain or discomfort while using the restroom.
- Especially heavy menstrual bleeding or bleeding that occurs between menstrual cycles.
- Infertility or temporary difficulty becoming pregnant.
- Bouts of vomiting or nausea, most commonly during menstrual periods.
Endometriosis can be diagnosed using different methods. The first step is typically performing a routine pelvic exam to feel for cysts or scars behind the uterus. The next step often includes image testing with an ultrasound or MRI to try to detect smaller cysts that cannot be found during a pelvic exam.
Endometriosis can be extremely painful and debilitating for women to live with. Thankfully our women’s healthcare providers specialize in diagnosing this condition and offering helpful treatment plans based on the specific needs of each patient. For more information on endometriosis or to schedule an appointment with one of our providers today, please contact Family Practice Center today. You can also follow along with us on Facebook and Twitter for additional health tips, news, photos, and more.