Endometriosis is a disease in the female reproductive system in which the tissue of the inner lining of the uterine wall or endometrium grows outside the uterine cavity. When a woman has endometriosis, this means that this lining develops outside her uterus and acts just as it usually would, especially during her monthly period.
This disease occurs when endometrial tissue grows outside the womb. The tissue is also undergoing a thickening and thorough process which is the same as the menstrual cycle. However, the blood eventually settles and cannot get out because it is located outside the womb and ultimately causes intense pain. The blood deposit will irritate the surrounding tissue. Over time, scar tissue or irritation is formed.
The endometriosis causes are not known for certain. However, possible connections between this ailment and other bodily factors and processes have been discovered such as:
- Endometrial cell transport
- Reverse or retrograde menstruation
- Surgical Scars
- Embryonic cell growth
- Fetal development
- Weakened immune system
- Hormones, specifical estrogen
There are also certain risk factors that may increase your chances of being diagnosed with endometriosis.
- Having an abnormal uterus
- Having menstruation that last more than seven days or the menstrual cycles are less than 27 days
- Lighter skin (white women have a higher risk)
Although this disease is not classified as a deadly disease, chronic endometriosis can cause symptoms that are very disturbing the daily activities of the patients. The symptoms may occur differently among women. Some may experience a variety of symptoms, while others may not even notice any at all. The symptoms in general are:
- Pain especially extreme menstrual cramps
- Pain during intercourse
- Abnormal or heavy menstrual flow that lasts for more than seven days or you have to change pads every one to two hours
- Painful urination and bowel movements during menstrual periods
- Nausea and vomiting
- Bloody stool or urine
- Gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea and constipation
Because of the certain cause is unknown, the accurate endometriosis treatment also does not exist. The aim of treatment is to reduce symptoms. So, it will not disturb the daily routine of the person. Physicians may often recommend synthetic hormone therapy to help relieve pain such as:
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- Oral contraceptives that have a combination of estrogen and progestin to impede ovulation and lessen your menstrual flow
- Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists to block ovarian hormone production
Besides taking medicines, you also can relieve endometriosis naturally. These herbs and plants are safe and as effective as conventional painkillers. Here are some herbs that you can try.
- Turmeric. It is helpful in treating inflammatory diseases and autoimmune disorders.
- Ginger. It can reduce inflammation, treat menstrual cramps, and relieve endometriosis-caused nausea.
- Chamomile. Its anti-inflammatory properties are able to lessen inflammation and swelling caused by endometriosis
- Bromelain. It is to treat indigestion and lessen inflammation.
You might already have an extreme case of endometriosis, and at this point, any of these surgical procedures might be recommended:
- Laparoscopy. This allows the surgeon to look into your pelvic area and search for endometrial growths that can be removed.
- Laparotomy. This surgical procedure aims to remove as much of the displaced endometrial tissue without damaging other healthy tissue.
- Hysterectomy. It is a surgery wherein the uterus and possibly even the ovaries are removed.