Endometriosis is a problem many women have during their childbearing years. It means that a type of tissue that lines your uterus is also growing outside your uterus. This does not always cause symptoms. And it usually is not dangerous. But it can cause severe pain and other problems.
The clumps of tissue that grow outside your uterus are called implants. They usually grow on the ovaries, the fallopian tubes, the outer wall of the uterus, the intestines, or other organs in the belly. In rare cases, they spread to areas beyond the belly.
Unlike normal Endometrium, these implants have no way of leaving the body and result in potentially crippling pain, scar tissue and adhesions, infertility and pregnancy loss, bleeding, inflammation, formation of cysts, and even blockage of nearby organs.
What causes endometriosis?
Experts do not know what causes endometrial tissue to grow outside your uterus. But they do know that the female hormone estrogen makes the problem worse. Women have high levels of estrogen during their childbearing years. It is during these years-usually from their teens into their 40s-that women have endometriosis. Estrogen levels drop when menstrual periods stop (menopause). Symptoms usually go away then.
What are the symptoms?
o Pain before and during periods
o Pain with intercourse
o General, chronic pelvic pain throughout the month
o Low back pain
o Heavy and/or irregular periods
o Painful bowel movements, especially during menstruation
o Painful urination during menstruation
o Diarrhea or constipation
Is there a cure for Endometriosis?
Currently we have no cure for endo. Even a hysterectomy or removing the ovaries does not guarantee that the Endometriosis areas and/or the symptoms of Endometriosis will not continue.
Excessive pain during your period to the point where you have to curl up in a ball with a heating pad and your covers over your entire body is NOT normal. Pain during your period should not make you miss out on school, work, friends, events or anything else. If it does PLEASE VISIT YOUR OB/GYN.
Here are some site dedicated to helping support women with Endometriosis:
Endometriosis Research Study: