Endometriosis Treatment – Symptoms and Diagnosis
Endometriosis treatment is really a subject that has many theories based on lots of trial and error. The reason there is absolutely no clear cut treatment is that no one really knows what can cause this disease. Most treatments are used to help control the condition and mitigate the outward symptoms it causes.
The outward symptoms of endometriosis affect the women who suffer them in various ways. Most women notice an increase in symptoms as their menstrual period approaches and begins. In rarer cases the outward symptoms persist through the entire month. The discomfort and pain is generally localized in the pelvic, abdominal or lower back regions. The severity of the pain caused varies from woman to woman. Endometriosis may also cause heavy menstruation and in severe cases infertility.
The initial step to endometriosis treatment is getting properly diagnosed. Women who experience endometriosis symptoms should see their gynecologist. Occasionally Endometriosis risks or MRI can detect the small endometrial growths but a definitive diagnosis can only just be produced through laparoscopic surgery. Laparoscopy is a minimal invasive procedure in which a thin tube with a light and camera on the finish is inserted in to the abdomen. This gives the doctor a genuine time view of any endometrial lesions, their size and extant of these growth. Once a positive diagnosis is made treatment options may then be discussed and considered.
Endometriosis Treatment – Choices for Treating Endometriosis
When an endometriosis treatment solution is being discussed there are many points that need to be considered by the woman and her doctor.
? How severe will be the symptoms
? Which kind of symptoms is she having
? How old is she
? Is she looking to get pregnant
? How long if the treatment last
? What side effects will drug treatment have
? How much will it cost
Once these questions are answered a treatment plan for endometriosis could be made.
Understanding what can cause endometrial cells living beyond your uterus to grow is essential in knowing why certain treatments are better than others. Endometriosis is a disease driven by a woman’s hormonal cycle and specifically estrogen. As a woman’s estrogen levels increase through the month endometrial tissue in the uterus thickens with blood and nutrient rich tissue as it prepares for a fertilized egg. Any endometrial tissue outside the uterus in the abdomen responds in the same fashion.
Hormone endometriosis treatment functions by limiting or controlling the quantity of estrogen made by a woman’s body. Lowering the estrogen level limits the number of growth the endometrial cells can undergo thereby limiting the irritation and inflammation they cause.
The hormone control drugs used in the treating endometriosis include:
? Birth control pills
? GnRH agonists
? Progesterone hormone tablets
Using hormone drugs as an endometriosis treatment is generally prescribed for women who have milder cases of the disease. Hormonal treatments suppress the ability of the endometrial cells to thicken with blood thereby assisting to relieve the outward symptoms. By reducing how much estrogen the drugs “starve” the endometrial tissue causing them to shrink and be inactive.
Drug treatment only works at that time the girl is taking the medication. It isn’t a cure but a means of managing the endometriosis. If and when the medications stops the endometriosis will become active again over a period of 12 to two years.
Women with more severe forms of endometriosis normally need to look at the surgical option of endometriosis treatment. Whenever there are endometrial lesions over 3cm in diameter and/or numerous adhesions the probability of those responding to medications are minimal.
The most common type of surgical endometriosis treatment is laparoscopy. Also called keyhole surgery, laparoscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure when a small quarter inch incision is made just underneath the belly button. The laparoscopic instrument, that includes a small light and camera attached, is then inserted into the abdomen and the surgeon can search out and destroy any endometrial tissue they find.
Endometrial lesions are destroyed utilizing a procedure known as diathermy. A power current is passed down a fine probe attached to the laparoscopic instrument and is used the burn the lesion off the surrounding tissue. In some cases lasers are also used to the same effect. Other surgical instruments such as small scissors and scalpels could also be used the take away the endometrial tissue. This kind of surgery has a 70% success rate in improving the pain causing outward indications of endometriosis.
A Laparotomy is a surgical endometriosis treatment that is used when the endometrial lesions and adhesions are larger and more widespread. It needs the surgeon to open the abdominal cavity for better usage of the affected areas. This type of surgery carries greater risks then a laparoscopic procedure as it is an operation that is more serious and involved.
The last surgical option for women with endometriosis is hysterectomy and oophorectomy. This can be the surgery of the uterus and ovaries. This is the radical endometriosis treatment option because this type of surgery will cause a female to get into early menopause. The ovaries must be removed because they are in charge of making a lot of the estrogen within a woman’s body and estrogen may be the primary hormone responsible for endometrial flare ups.
Any surgical procedure posesses certain amount of risk and should be discussed thoroughly with the girl physician.
Endometriosis Treatment – Conclusion
Any woman undergoing endometriosis treatment must remember that this disease still does not have any identifiable cause nor will there be a clear cut cure. Because of this there exists a chance that symptoms will re-occur after a particular treatment regimen is discontinued. Discussing every treatment possibilities with the woman’s gynecologist is the best solution to understanding the what, how and just why of endometriosis treatment.