Ladies and gentlemen, girls and boys, gather around.
In honour of Women’s History Month – the entire month of March ( in America but I guess we can all celebrate it ) and World Endometriosis March which took place yesterday ( I hope… well according to google), we are going to have a little discussion on Endometriosis.
I’m going to explain as much as I can what endometriosis is but won’t go into much details about the treatment because I’m not a doctor… yet and the treatment is usually individualised so basically, different strokes for different folks.
Imagine having a migraine ( moderate/severe and recurrent headaches ) then imagine having little heads with as much pain at different places in your body at the same time. That’s basically how endometriosis works.
Endometriosis is a condition in which the inner lining of the uterus ( endometrium ) grows on other organs in the body.
When menstruation occurs ( I assume we all know what menstration means yeah? Yeah ), the endometrium contracts and that’s why women have dysmenorrhea- menstral pain ( some women are lucky enough not to ) but when you have endometriosis, there’s endometrial tissue at different places especially at the pelvis and abdominal regions – your peritoneum, ovaries, Fallopian tube, bladder, rectum etc. and could could also be in the lungs ( i knowwwww!! ) so the pain you’ll feel is on another level and could definitely land you in the hospital because all those organs will be contracting as well ( for simplicity purpose, we can replace ‘contract’ with ‘squeeze’).
It is important to note however that the amount of pain felt does not correlate at all to the size of the ‘foreign’ endometrial tissue. Woman A could have a small tissue on one ovary and feel way more pain than woman B who has a bigger size on both the ovary and the Fallopian tube.
Endometriosis doesn’t mean you’ll be automatically infertile. About 30 – 40 % of women who suffer from this condition may not be able to get pregnant but many women can, either naturally or with medical assistance.
A few theories have come up as to why this happens, could be retrograde menstration( ), hematogenous cell transport, transformation of cells, implantation at surgical site and a bunch of other theories we don’t need to concern ourselves about but the exact cause is unknown
Endometriosis causes many symptoms like heavy periods, fatigue, lower back pain but most importantly severe pelvic pain ( often cyclical but also mid cycle ), dyspareunia( painful sex ) , pain during urination, pain during bowel movement, and infertility.
Hysterectomy ( removal of the womb ) is NOT a definitive CURE for this condition. It’s important to know this if it’s presented to you as a treatment option
There are some risk factors know that could increase one’s chance of getting this condition such as: family history, early menarche ( the age you get your first period), alcohol use, prolonged periods, short intervals between periods and a few others.
Endometriosis mostly affects women in their thirties but could affect anyone who has started menstruating so yes, your 11 year old sister or daughter can suffer from it.
Also related: Breast Cancer Awareness
Unfortunately for us, there is no cure yet even though it’s not a rare condition BUT it could be managed with some drugs and surgery depending on what your doctor recommends.
So guyssss, that’s it! I hope we’ve all learnt something about endometriosis. Another thing I’ll like us to keep in mind is never to trivialise pain. If I say I’m in pain, then I am ( well except I’m a chronic liar and manipulator but you get the point)
Was this post simple enough to understand? Did you know about endometriosis before now? Do you know anyone with this condition?
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Till next time,