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Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition in which cells usually found inside the uterus grow on the surface of the uterus or on other organs in the abdomen. This condition can be painful and often results in irregular bleeding or even infertility. Estimates of the percentage of women with endometriosis who will have difficulty conceiving run as high as 40 percent. It is estimated that up to 10 percent of all women have endometriosis, but it is difficult to be certain, since most cases are diagnosed through surgery to relieve abdominal pain.

Symptoms of endometriosis

In endometriosis, the severity of pain is not linked to the severity of the condition. Some women have no pain, even though their disease affects large areas or has caused internal scarring. Other women experience severe pain, even though their endometriosis is confined to a few small areas.

Symptoms of endometriosis can include:

Screening options for endometriosis

Your doctor may diagnose endometriosis using:

Talking with your doctor about endometriosis

Questions about endometriosis

  1. What is the cause of my endometriosis?
  2. Is there a cure for endometriosis?

Questions about endometriosis treatment options

  1. What about hormonal therapy?
  2. Are there surgical options other than hysterectomy?
  3. What are the associated risks and benefits?

If you're not satisfied with the responses you receive, consider asking for a second opinion. You are an integral part of your healthcare team and you should feel comfortable with your physician and the recommended treatment.

There are treatments aimed at relieving the symptoms of endometriosis. Unfortunately, however, there is no cure. If you need treatment for endometriosis, your options include medicine, hormonal therapy, nutritional therapy, complementary therapy and surgery. Together with your doctor, you will develop a treatment plan based on:

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