What is Endometriosis
Endometriosis is a common gynaecological disorder thought to affect up to 10% of reproductive-aged women[i] worldwide. In people with endometriosis, tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus (the endometrium) starts to grow in other parts of the reproductive system. Endometriosis most commonly affects[ii] the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and tissues lining the pelvis.
Endometriosis is a chronic and often debilitating disease that can cause severe pelvic pain and menstrual cramps, nausea, and fatigue. The condition may lead to other serious conditions such as depression, anxiety, and infertility.
Signs and Symptoms of Endometriosis
Endometriosis is often characterized by severe pelvic pain, but some people with the disorder may experience little or no pain. It is important to note that the degree of pain does not indicate the severity of the condition[iii], and there are several other signs and symptoms of endometriosis to watch out for.
- Excessively painful menstrual cramps
- Menstrual cramps 1 or 2 weeks around the time of your period
- Heavy bleeding during periods
- Bleeding between periods
- Pain during sex
- Pain or discomfort during bowel movements
- Pain or discomfort during urination
- Other gastrointestinal problems during periods
(e.g. constipation, diarrhea, nausea, bloating)
- Lower back pain that may occur at any point of your menstrual cycle
Despite being one of the most common gynaecological diseases among girls and women, endometriosis frequently goes undiagnosed.[iv] As abdominal pain is one of the main symptoms associated with the condition, women’s symptoms are often mistaken for those of normal menstruation, and their concerns dismissed. On average, a woman in the United States will wait 10 years for a formal diagnosis of endometriosis.
What Should You do if You Think You Have Endometriosis?
If you think you might have endometriosis, make an appointment with either Dr Lisa Joels, Obstetrician & Gynaecologist (OBGYN) or Dr Madhavi Manoharan, Obstetrician & Gynaecologist (OBGYN) to discuss your symptoms. They will be happy to assess your symptoms, and advise you on the best treatment options available to you.