I have been diagnosed with endometriosis and surgery has been recommended. Can you help me understand this condition and the pros and cons of having surgery?
Endometriosis is a painful condition in which fragments of the lining of the uterus (endometrium) are found outside the uterus. But the ovaries, fallopian tubes and bowel are at their usual sites. It’s most common among women in their 30s and 40s who haven’t had children.
Symptoms include dragging period pains – sometimes starting before the onset of bleeding and getting worse as the period progresses.
Heavy bleeding, pain during intercourse and difficulty getting pregnant are all complications, and the risk of ectopic pregnancy is increased.
Treatment involves medication that influences hormonal cycling, such as the contraceptive Pill, preventing ovulation and ‘switching off’ the driver for endometriosis. The Pill prevents the endometriosis from advancing, but can’t guarantee pain relief.
Fragments of endometriosis can also be removed by laser surgery to help prevent further formations. If you are trying for a baby, follow the advice of your gynaecologist and do not delay your treatment. If surgery is recommended, then consider having it sooner rather than later.
While other treatment methods may reduce the symptoms, only surgery offers a lasting solution.