Endometriosis is a common condition characterised by endometrial tissue, normally found in the lining of the womb, being trapped elsewhere in the body. According to the charity, Endometriosis UK, approximately 1 in 10 women of reproductive age have endometriosis. If you think you might be one of the many women who suffer from the condition, the first thing to do is to seek advice from a medical professional. Consulting with a gynaecologist is the first step to investigating your symptoms and get you on the road to a diagnosis if necessary. You need only search for ‘gynaecologist London’ on the internet to garner tens of results to help you choose the best option for you.
Understanding more about endometriosis
With endometriosis, the tissue found outside the womb grows throughout the menstrual cycle and becomes thicker before breaking down and bleeding. As the blood from this tissue cannot leave the body as it does in the womb, the surrounding body parts can become irritated and swollen. These areas of tissue, or lesions, can also cause pressure on nearby nerves, hence why those with endometriosis experience pain throughout their cycle.
Additionally, the condition also interrupts and affects the normal process of the menstruation cycle in relation to fertility. Scientists believe that the condition inhibits the movement of an egg along the fallopian tube. The severity of the disease has been closely linked with infertility and difficulties in getting pregnant
Women with the condition can experience many symptoms throughout the stages of their menstrual cycle, however, the main symptom that most report is abnormal pain during menstruation. As well as this, other symptoms of the condition include pain during intercourse, infertility, fatigue, nausea and pain with bowel movements, however, everyone experiences endometriosis differently, so it is important to seek medical advice from a gynaecologist.
How endometriosis impacts the menstrual cycle
The condition itself can also have an impact on the length of the cycle and its stages. Periods may last longer whilst the entire cycle may become shorter – this happens as a result of the body having more tissue than normal to shed. During menstruation, you may experience heavy and/or irregular bleeding, bleeding between periods and bleeding for longer than normal during your period (4). Periods can be painful and can cause unpleasant symptoms for many women who do not have endometriosis. However, if your periods are debilitating or are stopping you from carrying out your regular activities, please consult a gynaecologist for further investigation.