Endometriosis is a common gynecological condition affecting women in Singapore. Women with this condition have a higher chance of being infertile or having trouble getting pregnant. Please read on to find out the symptoms, causes, and treatment of this condition.
An Overview of Endometriosis
Endometriosis is a condition where tissues similar to the uterine lining grow outside the uterus. They can grow in the fallopian tubes, ovaries, or even tissues lining the pelvis. On rare occasions, the tissues can be in the intestines, bladder, rectum, vagina, cervix, vulva, or even in scars left after abdominal surgery. There are different stages of this condition, which are affected by the endometrialm implant’s number, location, size, and depth. The four main stages of endometriosis are;
Symptoms of Endometriosis
Different women portray different symptoms of endometriosis. Also, the severity of the condition does not determine how much pain you will feel or what stage your condition is in. Notably, some may not even portray the symptoms.
The following are the common symptoms of endometriosis;
- Pain in the pelvis
- Painful periods
- Feeling pain during sexual intercourse
- Heavy bleeding during menses
- Excess cramps during menses
- Discomfort when moving bowels, especially during menstrual periods
- Pain in the lower back
Since the symptoms vary, it is important to go for regular checkups so that your gynecologist can monitor any changes.
Cause of Endometriosis
There is no information on the exact cause of endometriosis. The available theories are not yet proven and suggest that endometriosis is caused by;
- Retrograde menstruation
- Hormones transforming cells outside the uterus into endometrial cells
- Areas of your abdomen converting into tissues that are similar to endometrial tissues.
- Endometrial cells being transported out of the uterus through lymphatic channels.
- Links to genetics and environmental toxins.
Treatment of Endometriosis
When you encounter pain and its symptoms, you might need to consult a gynaecologist. Unfortunately, there is no cure for endometriosis yet. However, the good news is that its symptoms are manageable. The following are some of the ways of managing this condition and possible resulting complications;
1. Hormone Therapy; involves taking hormonal pills to help in pain relief and stop further progression of the condition. They help prevent the endometrial-like tissues from growing or building up monthly. Hormonal treatment can be in the form of pills or injections. Recently, the use Visanne has gained popularity in the treatment of endometriosis. Visanne contains a progestogen hormone, dienogest. Taking one Visanne tablet every day leads to the shrinking of the endometrial tissue and reduces associated complaints such as pelvic pain and painful monthly bleedings. of the oral pill.
2. Pain Medications; you might take over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen to help manage the pain. However, they may not always be effective.
a. Conservative Laparoscopic Surgery is the standard treatment for patients with issues such chronic pelvic pain refractory to medication or endometriotic ovarian cysts. It can confirm the diagnosis of endometriosis and aims at removing or getting rid of endometriosis with minimal damage to your reproductive organs to enhance fertility and relieve symptoms.
b. Hysterectomy; if you have tried other treatments for the condition with no success, this could be the last resort. After the procedure, you can no longer get pregnant. A surgeon can perform a total hysterectomy, which involves the removal of the uterus, cervix, with or without ovaries.
Endometriosis is a common condition that can develop in different parts of the female body; the ovaries, fallopian tubes, tissues supporting the uterus, or outside the uterus. You should consult your gynecologist if you suspect you have endometriosis so that he advise you accordingly.