Endometriosis is a quite dangerous condition that affects a great number of women. It is considered one of the most common causes of heavy periods. Moreover, advanced endometriosis can lead to infertility. In this article, we gathered everything you should know about endometriosis.

What is endometriosis
Endometriosis is a condition in which the endometrium (the inner lining of the uterus) spreads outside the uterus on the pelvic organs. This endometrial tissue can grow on the fallopian tubes, ovaries, the bladder, intestines, etc. The main problem is that endometriosis can develop asymptomatically. As a result, many women start to experience some of the endometriosis manifestations at the late stages of the disease.

The most common endometriosis symptoms include:

- Heavy blood flow during periods
- Pelvic pain
- Severe cramping during periods
- Pain during sex
- Painful urination and/or bowel movements

The medical society is still not sure what exactly can cause the endometrial overgrowth. However, there are some factors that can contribute to the development of endometriosis. The most common of them are retrograde menstruation, heredity, and previous surgery.

Retrograde menstruation is a condition in which the menstrual blood with endometrial particles enters the abdominal cavity and fallopian tubes. The endometrium can attach to the tissues of pelvic organs and shed during periods but cannot move outside.

If your mother or sister have had or still have endometriosis, your chances to develop it increase. Moreover, if you had any surgical treatment for the uterus or reproductive organs, it can also contribute to the development of endometriosis.

If left untreated, endometriosis can cause severe complications. One of the most common of them is infertility. When the uterine lining grows on the reproductive organs like the ovaries and the fallopian tubes, it prevents the egg release.

Endometrial tissue that grows near or on the ovaries may create adhesions that interfere with fertility. These adhesions may also block the fallopian tubes as well. Even though pregnancy in women with endometriosis is still possible, the likelihood of miscarriage increases significantly.

Moreover, endometriosis can contribute to the development of ovarian cysts that are called endometriomas. You should also know that up to 40 percent of women with endometriosis develop endometriomas.

Treatment options
There is no single endometriosis treatment option for everyone. The treatment plan should be created individually for each specific patient. It depends on the symptoms, reproductive plans, and the prevalence of endometriosis. Hormonal therapy and pain medication can ease symptoms but can’t cope with the endometrial tissue overgrowth.

In the case of infertility and suspected endometriosis, diagnostic laparoscopy must be performed. Surgical debridement of even small foci of endometriosis on the peritoneum increases the frequency of conception. Medication treatment is ineffective for infertility and adhesions.

As for endometriomas, surgery on the ovaries and fallopian tubes should be performed only in specialized hospitals with the most careful attitude to the ovarian follicular apparatus. However, a radical focus should be provided in terms of removing the entire capsule of the endometrioid cyst. This can help prevent the recurrence of endometriomas in the future. A laparoscopic approach is considered one of the most suitable.

With repeated surgical interventions, a depleted ovarian follicular apparatus, preliminary stimulation of ovulation with the collection of eggs, and cryopreservation of embryos at the preoperative stage are allowed. Timely diagnosis and proper treatment provide a successful result of conception in many cases.

Endometriosis of the cervix can be ​​treated only with the help of surgery. Unfortunately, the lessons can’t be cured with conservative hormone therapy. You can also ask your doctor about a gentle radio wave treatment of the cervix in which dense scars aren’t formed and the early healing of the tissue is possible.

Author's Bio: 

I am Amelia Grant, journalist, and blogger. I think that information is a great force that is able to change people’s lives for the better. That is why I feel a strong intention to share useful and important things about health self-care, wellness and other advice that may be helpful for people. Being an enthusiast of a healthy lifestyle that keeps improving my life, I wish the same for everyone.