Endometriosis is a serious and painful gynecological condition affecting an estimated 7 million women in the United States. At Advanced OB/GYNE Associates in Hoffman Estates and Arlington Heights, Illinois, Dr. Andrea Das specializes in women’s health and complications such as endometriosis. Dr. Das provides effective treatments and testing methods, including pelvic laparoscopies, pelvic exams, and ultrasounds. If you live in Chicagoland and have pelvic pain or any concerns, call the office or use online booking to schedule an appointment.
Endometriosis is a serious gynecological condition when the tissue that lines your uterus begin to grow elsewhere in your body.
The uterine tissue can grow on your fallopian tubes, ovaries, and other surrounding pelvic organs. In less common cases, it can grow in your intestine, bladder, bowel, rectum, or appendix. Endometriosis can develop in scars left behind from surgery on your pelvic organs as well.
The displaced endometrial tissue continues to act as normal and thickens, breaks down, and bleeds with each menstrual cycle. The displaced tissue can’t exit your body and becomes trapped, leading to scarring, adhesions, pain, and further complications.
Endometriosis commonly affects women of childbearing age. Some women have the condition for many years without getting it diagnosed.
Symptoms of endometriosis include:
More severe cases of endometriosis can lead to urinary and bowel disorders and fertility complications.
There are numerous theories regarding what causes or exacerbates endometriosis, but the exact cause isn’t known.
Meyer’s theory posits that endometriosis is most likely present during fetal development and is activated in puberty when your estrogen levels increase.
Sampson’s theory involves retrograde menstruation, which is the backward flow of menstruation. This occurs in around 90% of women, but most of them won’t develop endometriosis.
Some experts believe the immune system and inflammation plays a part in the development of endometriosis.
Also, you’re far more likely to develop endometriosis if you have a family history of the condition.
Determining the right treatment for endometriosis depends on the severity of your condition. You start with a consultation where you discuss your situation with Dr. Das, and she conducts any necessary diagnostic exams or screenings like a pelvic exam, laparoscopy, or transvaginal ultrasound.
You discuss your treatment options, such as surgery or medications, at your consultation with Dr. Das. It’s important to consider if you wish to have children in the future since some treatment options can end your fertility and are therefore only appropriate for some people.
In some cases, hormone therapy can be used to regulate the hormones that can exacerbate endometriosis. Anti-inflammatory medications that focus on reducing inflammation and pain may also help.
If you have concerns, pelvic pain, or other bothersome symptoms, visit Dr. Das at Advanced OB/GYNE Associates. Schedule an appointment online or by calling the office today.