Dr. Meike Uhler began by explaining the condition: “Millions of women around the world have endometriosis, and it is one of the most common causes of infertility. It is important that women and those close to them understand the disease, as well as how to alleviate symptoms and overcome fertility challenges.”
Dr. Uhler has provided Digital Journal readers with seven common questions about endometriosis, which he hopes will improve understanding about the disease.
1. How is endometriosis diagnosed?
Laparoscopy, a common surgical procedure with a camera that is inserted into the abdominal cavity to directly see endometrial growths, is needed for the diagnosis of endometriosis. Diagnoses can also be made through a biopsy of tissue samples.
2. What are common symptoms?
Symptoms include painful menstruation, pain during sexual activity, painful urination or bowel movements during menstruation, infertility, fatigue, recurrent yeast infections, chemical sensitivities, allergies, and gastrointestinal issues such as nausea, constipation and diarrhea.
3. Can only older women be diagnosed?
Endometrial tissue only forms in women with active ovarian hormone production, restricting diagnoses to women of reproductive age. Symptoms may arise during adolescence, but many women are not diagnosed until they are older.
4. What is the cause?
The cause of endometriosis remains unknown.
5. How many women have endometriosis?
Roughly 176 million women worldwide.
6. Is there a cure?
There is no known cure, but there are solutions available to alleviate symptoms.
7. How can you lessen symptoms?
Through hormonal treatments such as birth control pills, symptoms can be lessened but not eradicated. Symptoms tend to lessen during pregnancy.
Fertility Centers of Illinois isone of the leading fertility treatment practices in the United States, providing advanced reproductive endocrinology services in the Chicago area since 1976.