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What is Endometriosis?

This condition affects around two million British women and is therefore a common women’s health issue. Endometriosis is usually diagnosed in women who are between 25 and 40 years old and it occurs when small womb-lining fragments are found outside the womb.

Your IPSA Medical endometriosis consultation

When you attend your IPSA Medical endometriosis consultation, you will always be seen by one of our female IPSA Medical doctors with experience in gynaecological medicine and an additional interest in family planning. Your IPSA Medical clinic setting is clean and quiet, and in this totally confidential space, IPSA Medical’s client-centred approach to health issues means that you will be fully involved in your consultation process, and that your endometriosis symptoms will be taken seriously.

Your female IPSA Medical clinician will both explain and fully discuss all the available endometriosis treatment options with you, before reaching a decision on the best route for the management of your particular endometriosis symptoms.

What is the cause of endometriosis?

Although the cause/causes of endometriosis are still unknown, several theories have been put forward. Perhaps the most widely accepted of the theories is that your womb lining does not leave your body in the way it should during your period, and instead embeds itself on your pelvic organs.

What are the main symptoms of endometriosis?

The symptoms that are experienced when you have endometriosis can vary quite dramatically between women and some women even experience no symptoms.

The symptoms that are mostly associated with endometriosis are:

  •    Painful sex both after and/or whilst having sexual intercourse
  • Painful and often heavy periods
  •     Pain in your pelvis, in your tummy (your lower abdomen) or pain in your lower back
  •    Sex that is painful both during sexual intercourse and/or after sexual intercourse
  • Conception issues
  •    Bleeding in-between your periods

 

How is endometriosis treated at my IPSA Medical clinic?

For some women presenting with endometriosis, your IPSA Medical doctor will recommend having an ultrasound scan (USS). As endometriosis can lead to cysts developing in your ovaries, this type of scan is used in order to locate any ovarian cysts. The scan, unfortunately, is not a fully accurate method with which to test for endometriosis, because endometriosis is only confirmed when a laparoscopy (which is a surgical examination) is carried out.

During your IPSA Medical endometriosis consultation, your IPSA Medical clinician can suggest referrals for any of the necessary further investigations (e.g. a laparoscopy, which is a camera test) to confirm your endometriosis diagnosis. If you require a referral, your IPSA Medical doctor can immediately arrange it at a local clinic at a time to suit you.

Hormonal treatment at your IPSA Medical clinic

Endometriosis does respond to and grow when oestrogen (one of the female hormones) is present. Some of the available hormone treatments work by reducing and/or blocking oestrogen production in your body so that your endometriosis is unable to grow. This type of hormonal treatment helps by relieving your symptoms.

If hormonal treatment is an option, then your IPSA Medical clinician will talk to you about what is involved with the hormonal treatment, the pros and cons of the treatment, and the possible side effects of this type of hormonal treatment.

Pain control

The main endometriosis symptom of pelvic pain is why your IPSA Medical physician will offer you various pain-relief options and pain-management options (e.g. anti-inflammatory medications; analgesic medications of different strengths).

Surgery

The pain you experience from endometriosis can often be alleviated through a surgical procedure. This involves cyst removal, dividing any adhesions that are present or removing the endometriosis. This is done with a laparoscopy (which is a type of keyhole surgery).

Endometriosis and pregnancy

Women suffering from endometriosis can have difficulties getting pregnant. Some women might not be able to conceive. This is the main complication of endometriosis; however, if you do manage to conceive, then your pregnancy is not likely to be at risk.

Pregnancy often reduces your endometriosis symptoms, yet once you have had your baby, stopped breastfeeding, and when your periods return to normal, endometriosis often returns.

At your IPSA Medical clinic, we know that waiting for an appointment is stressful, so we are able to arrange your same-day endometriosis appointment to fit in with the busiest of schedules.

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