Living With Endometriosis: Fertility Implications, Symptoms And Treatment
Consultant Gynaecologist and Obstetrician DrEko Zhang MBBS, MSc, MRCOG, PhD provides an insight into the symptoms, causes and treatments for endometriosis and how this condition can affect fertility.
What is endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition in which the tissue (endometrium) normally lining the womb (or uterus) grows outside the uterus, on and around the pelvic and abdominal organs. Over 1.5 million women are affected by this condition in the UK. The causes of this condition are medically unknown however some believe it to be hereditary.
What are the symptoms?
The most common symptoms of endometriosis are chronic pelvic pain, very painful periods, deep pain during sexual intercourse, difficulty becoming pregnant, heavy or abnormal menstrual flow, pain during ovulation, painful or frequent urination, physical exhaustion, painful bowel movements, diarrhoea or constipation upsets during menstruation and a difficulty in conceiving. These symptoms can vary in severity depending on where the endometriosis has implanted and how long the woman has had it. Some women however experience no symptoms at all.
Endometriosis and fertility
In some women endometriosis can cause infertility. This is solely dependent on how the disease has affected the reproductive organs. In some cases it can cause the fallopian tubes to become blocked which can then damage the ovaries, making conception increasingly difficult and even causing infertility. In order to diagnose the severity and determine the area affected, a doctor will explore your symptoms and perform a pelvic examination and possible ultrasound to assess the implications if any your condition may have on conceiving.
Endometriosis has no known cure however it can be treated to sufficiently relieve symptoms. Pain medication such as ibuprofen and codeine can be prescribed to ease discomfort and pain. Hormone treatments are also proven to ease symptoms. _________require DrZhangs knowledge here________ In regards to treatment and infertility IVF is not only very common amongst women with this condition but also has a good success rate.
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms or would like a consultation to discuss possible fertility options and treatments you can book an appointment with one of our consultants via www.richmondpractice.co.uk, call us on 02089405009.