Experiencing heavy and painful periods is common for women. Even so, if it gets to the point where it is excessively painful, you might want to get checked by a gynecologist. Many don’t know much about endometriosis and it can also be poorly understood. In fact, endometriosis affects around 1 in 10 women. That’s 176 million women worldwide. Here at the Perpetual Help Medical Center-Las Pinas, we are dedicated to raising and spreading awareness on endometriosis in the Philippines to ensure that women are always on top of their health.
Furthermore, if endometriosis is not attended to, it can lead to serious complications such as continuous pelvic pain and even infertility. Here’s a rundown on everything you need to know about endometriosis.
What is Endometriosis?
To start off, what is endometriosis? Endometriosis gets its name from the word endometrium, the tissue that normally lines your uterus or womb. Endometriosis occurs when these tissues grow outside your uterus and on the surfaces of organs where they do not normally grow.
Common endometriosis is found on the ovaries or fallopian tubes. Other sites for growth include the vagina, cervix, vulva, bladder, bowel, or the rectum.
The Symptoms of Endometriosis
Common symptoms of endometriosis include:
- Dysmenorrhea or painful periods
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Pain in bowel movements or during urination
- Excessive bleeding or heavy flow during menstruation
As you can see, some of these symptoms and signs are prevalent in the menstruation cycle of women. On the other hand, there are also women who experience no pain even when they have endometriosis. This is why in your reproductive years, it is highly recommended to have regular checkups with your gynecologist.
What Causes Endometriosis
Endometriosis can happen to any woman in their reproductive years. However, there are risk factors that increase the chances of developing endometriosis such as:
Your Family History and Genetics
Your risk is higher for developing endometriosis if someone in your family is diagnosed with it.
Different Menstrual Cycle Characteristics
The way you menstruate can put you at risk as well. Here are some different menstrual cycle characteristics that are more at risk for endometriosis.
- Retrograde menstruation
- Having 27 days or less between each menstruation cycle
- Individuals who have started their first period before the age of 12
You Cannot Prevent It
Unfortunately, there is no fool-proof way to prevent endometriosis. However, you can reduce your chances of developing it by lowering the levels of estrogen in your body.
Different Tests to Diagnose Endometriosis
If you have been experiencing the symptoms of endometriosis, make sure that you talk with your gynecologist immediately. Tests to diagnose endometriosis will depend on your doctor and the severity of your condition. Here are some of the most common ways:
- Pelvic Exam
- Imaging Test or Ultrasound
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging or MRI
There Is No Cure
Currently, there is no cure for endometriosis. However, there are a number of treatments that you could take to improve your quality of life and lessen your symptoms. Your gynecologist will discuss these different options with you depending on your age, the severity of symptoms, or if you are trying to get pregnant. Some of the most popular treatments available for the symptoms of endometriosis include hormonal birth control and surgery.
Fertility Rate and Endometriosis
If there’s anything endometriosis is known for, it is its link to fertility. Many ask if it is still possible to get pregnant if they have endometriosis. The answer is yes as long as you work closely with a gynecologist. However, you may find it harder to conceive. It all depends on your case and the severity of your endometriosis.
Endometriosis in the Philippines may be overlooked and misunderstood because of the normalization of symptoms. However, this is a serious gynecological case that could lead to more severe and serious diseases for women. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms stated above, it is best to contact your gynecologist immediately. Or better yet, make sure that you are attending your annual checkups.
At the Perpetual Help Medical Center-Las Pinas, we are dedicated to raising awareness for endometriosis. Not only that, but to all gynecological concerns to ensure that all women receive the best possible care they need.
To speak with any of our doctors about the different endometriosis treatments, visit us at Alabang-Zapote Rd., Pamplona III Las Pinas City, Philippines 1740 or call us at (+632) 8874-ALTA | (+632) 8874-8515.