Endometriosis: An Enigmatic Condition in Women’s Health

Endometriosis: it affects an estimated 176 million women worldwide however, it remains heavily undiagnosed in many women. This condition causes severe and debilitating pain that is often pushed under the rug as traditional pain from menstruating. This condition on average can take up to seven and a half years to diagnose and is one of the leading causes of infertility.

This March Stamps Health Services is spending Endometriosis Awareness Month breaking down the stigma behind this condition and helping you better understand the symptoms and signs! Stamps Health Services gynecologist, Dr. Moore answered some of the most asked questions he sees regarding this condition.

            What is endometriosis? Endometriosis occurs endometrial tissue grows in other parts of the body, typically the abdominal cavity causing adhesions, lesions, and cysts. This can cause extreme, and even debilitating, pain in the people who have it.

            What are the symptoms? Endometriosis affects 1 in 10 females of reproductive age and can strike at any point during this time, so being able to notice and recognize its indicators is imperative. Some prominent symptoms to be mindful of are fatigue, nausea, constipation, or bloating. The most common manifestations of this pain, however, are unusually heavy or painful menstruation, pain during bowel movements, during or after sex, and pelvic, lower back and abdominal pain. If left untreated, some people may also experience a or infertility.

            What treatments are available? The treatments for endometriosis can vary in levels of intensity. Some are more aimed at treating its painful symptoms, while others address the actual tissue. One common treatment is the prescription of birth control pills, which decrease the stimulation of the endometrial tissue just as they can decrease the length and flow of menstruation. Another prescription might assign drugs that put the body into temporary menopause. In other cases, pain medication or hormone therapy can be used. In extreme cases, the patient may need to have a laparoscopy in which the endometrial implants are surgically removed.

            What resources are available for students at Georgia Tech? The Women’s Health Clinic at Stamps Health Services is available for anyone to schedule an appointment. If you or someone you know are experiencing any of the above symptoms, please come in and discuss them. According to Dr. Moore, it is encouraged that anyone who is experiencing pain to the point of distress is seen, whether or not this pain is ultimately related to endometriosis. Many people are used to being told that their period pain is “normal,” but in truth, if it is causing you significant distress, then it should be discussed with a medical professional. For more information about scheduling an appointment at Stamps Health Services go to health.gatech.edu.

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