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Endometriosis FAQ’s From Our Fertility Specialist NC

Do you go through several pads an hour? Are your period cramps so severe you feel bedridden? You may have endometriosis. Affecting upwards of 10% of girls and women of reproductive age, at first glance this condition sounds rare. However, that translates to 190 million people suffering worldwide-which is far too many. If you suspect you have endometriosis, you’re probably scouring the internet for more information. Luckily, you’ve landed in the right place. From NCCRM, fertility specialist NC, here are the answers to some of your most frequently asked questions about endometriosis.

What Is Endometriosis?

Endometriosis is a disorder in which tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus – the endometrium – grows outside of your uterus. This causes severe pelvic pain during menstruation, which can be debilitating. For some women, this pain can even occur outside of the menstruation period.

While it most commonly appears on your ovaries, fallopian tubes, and tissues lining your pelvis, it can also be found in other areas of your body like the intestines or lungs. It’s also possible that those suffering from endometriosis may be susceptible to more than one gynecological issue, including infertility. Though not terminal, our fertility specialist NC understands that this invisible illness can cause a significant loss of quality of life.

What Causes Endometriosis?

The exact cause of endometriosis is unknown. However, there are several theories about how the condition develops. One theory is that during menstruation, some of the endometrial tissue flows backward through the fallopian tubes into the pelvis. This is known as retrograde menstruation.

Another theory suggests that endometrial tissue might be distributed to other parts of the body during surgery, such as a hysterectomy or C-section. The tissue then begins to grow and behave like endometrial tissue, even though it’s located in a place where our fertility specialist NC knows it doesn’t belong.

Finally, endometrial cells might be able to travel through blood or lymph vessels to other areas of the body. Once they reach a new location, they begin to grow and behave like endometrial tissue.

What Are The Symptoms of Endometriosis?

The most common symptom our North Carolina reproductive medicine center sees is pelvic pain. This pain can be felt in your lower abdomen, back, and thighs. The pain often occurs during your menstrual cycle, and it may get worse over time. Other symptoms of endometriosis include:

  • Heavier and longer-lasting menstrual periods than usual
  • Pain during or after sex
  • Pain with urination or bowel movements
  • Fatigue
  • Infertility

How Is Endometriosis Diagnosed?

If you’re experiencing symptoms suggestive of endometriosis, your doctor or fertility specialist NC will likely start by asking about your menstrual history and performing a pelvic exam. They might also order an ultrasound or MRI to get a better look at what’s going on inside your pelvis. The only way to definitively diagnose endometriosis is through a surgical procedure called laparoscopy, in which a small camera is inserted through a small incision in the abdomen so that the doctor can directly visualize any endometrial growths.

What Are the Treatment Options for Endometriosis?

Treatment for endometriosis depends on several factors, including how severe your symptoms are and whether you want to become pregnant. For mild cases of endometriosis, over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen may be sufficient. If over-the-counter medications aren’t enough, your doctor might prescribe birth control pills, patches, or rings to help manage pain by regulating hormone levels and preventing ovulation. For more severe cases of endometriosis, surgery may be necessary to remove growths and relieve pain. If you’re trying to conceive, fertility treatments by our fertility specialist NC such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) may be recommended.

NCCRM | Fertility Specialist NC

Since it’s well-known that you may feel cramps during menstruation, many people accept severe period pain and heavy periods of any degree as normal-even some gynecologists. Unlike other North Carolina fertility clinics, at NCCRM, we believe in trusting our patients. If you feel like you match the symptoms of endometriosis, our North Carolina Reproductive Medicine offices are here to help. Whether you’re coming to us for gynecological concerns or you’re looking for a fertility specialist NC, if you’re ready to find answers, we’re simply a phone call away.

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