1 out of every 9 Australian women and girls suffer with endometriosis.
Endometriosis is an incurable inflammatory condition that causes severe pain, infertility, and even hospitalisation.
It is a crippling disorder at times.
Even though it is not entirely curable, it can be managed through treatment.
Read on to learn what can be done to help you if you have endometriosis, and what to expect as you take the journey to getting endometriosis treatment.
What is endometriosis?
Endometriosis is an inflammatory condition that affects 1 in 9 women and girls in Australia — and many more worldwide.
It is the presence of the tissue that lines the uterine cavity outside the walls of the uterus.
This tissue is called the endometrium.
In endometriosis, the endometrium grows on other organs throughout the body — like the bladder, ovaries, bowels, and the back of the uterus.
This can cause infertility by blocking reproductive organs from doing their job.
With the endometrium growing on other organs, it can swell and cause severe pain.
The main symptoms many women and girls complain of is pain.
This can be excruciating pain in the lower back, pelvic, or abdominal area — with or without being on their menstrual cycle.
There are many symptoms of endometriosis besides pain.
For some women, there is a change in menstrual cycle patterns — not having them, having them longer, or flow becoming heavier.
30% of women with endometriosis suffer from infertility or having a hard time getting and staying pregnant.
How can it be treated?
Not every case of endometriosis needs treatment — those with severe pain and infertility should seek treatment, though.
There are many options for treatment, including surgery, pain medication, and hormonal medication — like birth control or progesterone treatments.
When surgery is a provided treatment, it can include a partial or full hysterectomy or removal of the endometrium lesions from the areas they are growing.
Other options can include a more holistic approach, such as Chinese medicine and herbal concoctions.
Since holistic treatments have not been proven to increase fertility or be reliable in treating pain, it is better to discuss with a gynecologist what options you should use.
Finding a great gynaecologist to provide treatment
If you think you may have endometriosis, or you have been diagnosed with it, do your research to find a great gynaecologist.
Ask your GP, family, or friends who they would refer you to.
Look at the online reviews and testimonials from previous or current patients.
Discuss what the doctor can do to provide you treatment, and what they think would be a good treatment plan for you.
Ask how much your insurance will pay and what you could expect to pay out of pocket.
Though it is not curable, endometriosis can be managed to prevent ongoing pain, hospitalisation, and infertility.
There is the option of surgery, medication, or a more holistic approach.
If you are suffering from endometriosis symptoms, such as pain or infertility, seek a gynaecologist today to start your journey to a symptom free life.