Our Austin obgyns provide expert diagnosis and treatment for endometriosis
Endometriosis is a condition that affects approximately five million women in the United States, the majority of whom are in their 30’s and 40’s. Endometriosis occurs when the endometrium, or lining of the uterus, grows in areas other than the uterus. This tissue growth may occur in several areas, including the ovaries, fallopian tubes, lining of the pelvic area, and outer surfaces of the rectum, bladder, intestines or uterus. The condition can be difficult to diagnose and treat, but our Austin obgyns have the experience to help women with this condition.
Symptoms of endometriosis
Normally, endometrial cells swell and thicken in response to estrogen produced each month as part of the menstrual cycle. As the cycle progresses, the uterus sheds these cells. When women have endometriosis, the cells of the endometrial tissue that grow outside the uterus aren’t shed during menstruation. Instead, they may bleed and grow, irritating and inflaming the tissue surrounding them. As this cycle repeats, adhesions, or scar tissue, may form causing symptoms, especially in the days before and during a woman’s period. The primary symptom women experience is pain.
- Painful menstrual cramps
- Chronic pain in the pelvic area and/or lower back
- Pain that occurs during or after sexual intercourse
- Pain during urination or bowel movements
- Lower stomach or intestinal pain
Pain isn’t the only symptom of endometriosis. Women may also experience the following symptoms.
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Irregular bleeding or spotting
- Digestive issues, particularly during periods, including bloating, nausea, constipation and diarrhea
In addition, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists states that approximately 40% of women who have fertility problems also have endometriosis.
Although endometriosis can cause pain and other troublesome symptoms, our Austin obgyns have the knowledge and experience to treat the condition.
Diagnosis and treatment
Our Austin obgyns begin the diagnostic process for endometriosis by performing a pelvic examination. Our physicians may also order imaging tests, such as an ultrasound or MRI to look for ovarian cysts. Another excellent diagnostic tool is a laparoscopy. This procedure enables our physicians to view the entire pelvis, visualize the endometriosis and biopsy tissue for diagnosis.
When endometriosis is diagnosed, our physicians will create an individualized treatment plan. Treatment ranges from over-the-counter or prescription medications to minimally invasive surgery to remove endometrial lesions.
Our physicians urge women to seek diagnosis and treatment if they are experiencing pain or other symptoms that may be caused by endometriosis. Ignoring the problem can lead to unnecessary complications. Contact us today for an appointment.