Endometriosis treatment is a subject that has many theories based on lots of trial and error. The reason why there is 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 symptoms it causes.
The outward symptoms of endometriosis affect the women who suffer them in different ways. Most women notice an increase in symptoms as their menstrual period approaches and begins. In rarer cases the outward symptoms persist throughout the month. The discomfort and pain is normally 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 gets properly diagnosed. Women who experience endometriosis symptoms should see their gynecologist. In some cases an ultrasound or MRI can detect the small endometrial growths but a definitive diagnosis can only just be made through laparoscopic surgery. Laparoscopy is a minimal invasive procedure in which a thin tube with a light and camera on the end is inserted in to the abdomen. This gives the doctor a real time view of any endometrial lesions, their size and extant of their growth. Once a confident diagnosis is made treatment options can then be discussed and considered.
What causes endometriosis? – Choices for Treating Endometriosis
When an endometriosis treatment plan is being discussed there are lots of points that need to be considered by the girl 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 medications have
? How much will it cost
Once these questions are answered cure plan for endometriosis can be made.
Understanding what can cause endometrial cells living outside the uterus to grow is essential in knowing why certain treatments work better than others. Endometriosis is really 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 beyond your uterus in the abdomen responds in exactly the same fashion.
Hormone endometriosis treatment works by limiting or controlling the amount of estrogen produced by a woman’s body. Lowering the estrogen level limits how much growth the endometrial cells can undergo thereby limiting the inflammation and irritation they cause.
The hormone control drugs used in the treatment of endometriosis include:
? Birth control pills
? GnRH agonists
? Progesterone hormone tablets
Using hormone drugs as an endometriosis treatment is generally prescribed for women who’ve milder cases of the condition. Hormonal treatments suppress the power of the endometrial cells to thicken with blood thereby assisting to relieve the outward symptoms. By reducing the quantity of 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 way of managing the endometriosis. If so when the medications stops the endometriosis will become active again over an interval of 12 to 24 months.
Women with more severe types of endometriosis normally need to look at the surgical option of endometriosis treatment. When there are endometrial lesions over 3cm in diameter and/or numerous adhesions the probability of those responding to medications are minimal.
The most common form of surgical endometriosis treatment is laparoscopy. Also known as keyhole surgery, laparoscopy is really a minimally invasive surgical procedure in which a small quarter inch incision is manufactured just below 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. An electrical current is passed down a fine probe mounted on the laparoscopic instrument and can be used the burn the lesion off the surrounding tissue. Sometimes lasers may also be used to exactly the same effect. Other surgical instruments such as small scissors and scalpels can 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’s used once the endometrial lesions and adhesions are larger and much more widespread. It requires the surgeon to open the abdominal cavity for better access to the affected areas. This type of surgery carries greater risks then a laparoscopic procedure as it can be an operation that is much more serious and involved.
The last surgical option for women with endometriosis is hysterectomy and oophorectomy. This is the surgery of the uterus and ovaries. This is a radical endometriosis treatment option because this sort of surgery will cause a woman to go into early menopause. The ovaries should be removed because they are in charge of making much of the estrogen found in a woman’s body and estrogen is the primary hormone responsible for endometrial flare ups.
Any surgical procedure posesses certain amount of risk and should be discussed thoroughly with the woman’s physician.
Endometriosis Treatment – Conclusion
Any woman undergoing endometriosis treatment needs to understand that this disease still does not have any identifiable cause nor will there be a clear cut cure. For this reason there is 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 way to understanding the what, how and just why of endometriosis treatment.