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8 Telltale Symptoms of Endometriosis

8 Telltale Symptoms of Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue similar to your endometrium 一 the tissue that lines your uterus 一 grows outside of your uterus. Endometrial lesions can form on your ovaries, vagina, fallopian tubes, cervix, bowel, bladder, and vulva. Not surprisingly, this can cause issues throughout your menstrual cycle. 

But how do you know if you have endometriosis? Endometriosis isn’t typically a “silent” condition. Here, Essam Taymour, MD, FACOG, and our team at Gynecology and Obstetrics Medical Group in Long Beach, California, highlight eight telltale symptoms of endometriosis that you should have checked out as well as what we can do to help.

1. Painful periods

Medically known as dysmenorrhea, painful periods are a telltale symptom of endometriosis. While many women may experience mild cramping during their periods, pain related to endometriosis is more intense. 

With endometriosis, your cramping may begin before your period starts and last throughout your period. In addition to pelvic pain, you may also experience lower back and abdominal pain.

2. Excessive bleeding

Endometriosis can also cause excessive bleeding. This includes heavy menstrual flow as well as intermenstrual bleeding 一 that’s bleeding that happens between your periods.

3. Pain during intercourse

Many women find that endometriosis contributes to pain during and after sexual intercourse. Of course, there are many potential causes of painful sex, so it’s important to confirm the source of your pain. Vaginal dryness associated with menopause, for example, can also contribute to pain during intercourse.

4. Trouble with bowel movements

Endometriosis can cause pain with bowel movements especially during your menstrual period. Other issues related to endometriosis include diarrhea, constipation, and bloating. 

5. Issues with infertility

According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, endometriosis can make it more difficult for you to conceive if endometrial lesions:

Up to 50% of women with endometriosis may experience infertility 一 which is defined as not being able to conceive after 12 months of having unprotected sexual intercourse.

6. Fatigue 

If you feel constantly worn down with zero energy, you’re not alone. Endometriosis-related fatigue is real. According to the Endometriosis Foundation of America, endometriosis contributes to fatigue because your body is working hard to eliminate the diseased tissue. 

Bottom line: Your immune system is working overtime, and the result is fatigue.

7. Bloating

Eating a heavily salted meal can leave you feeling a little bloated, but if you’re always feeling bloated and gassy, endometriosis may be the culprit. In fact, bloating with this condition is so common that many people refer to it as “endo belly.” 

8. Anxiety and depression

Although you might not link mental health conditions with endometriosis, the reality is that the many symptoms of endometriosis can increase your risk of anxiety and depression. Pain, loss of sleep (due to pain), and the constant fatigue are all connected in a vicious circle. Pain makes depression worse, and depression makes pain feel more intense.

Treating endometriosis: What are your options?

Because many of these symptoms could have multiple causes, the key to feeling better is first confirming that endometriosis is the source of your discomfort. Once Dr. Taymour confirms you have endometriosis, he may recommend either non-surgical treatments, such as hormone therapy and pain medication, or surgical treatments. 

Dr. Taymour utilizes advanced minimally invasive techniques to remove endometrial lesions without harming your reproductive organs. He typically only recommends hysterectomies in severe cases for women who are finished having children.

Don’t let untreated endometriosis rule your life. If you have symptoms that could point to endometriosis or you’d like to discuss your treatment options, know that we’re just a call or click away. You can reach the office at 562-247-3038 or schedule an appointment online today.

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