eep! so today i had a gynecologist appointment, and when i was there i was talking to her about going off the pill. i told her i was sick of taking pills every day, and mentioned that they weren't really helping with my cramps anymore.
scary: she said that if i still have reasonably bad cramps and i'm on the pill, that probably means i have endometriosis.
has anyone else heard this before? is endo a common problem? eep.
thanks to anyone who can help.
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endometriosis is when the endometrium (the inner lining of the uterus that grows and shed every month) starts growing in places other than the uterus. when it's not in the uterus, either the tissue stops operating on a cycle, or its cycle becomes really weird. if you are cramping a lot, then that means the endometrium is growing faster than it is shedding/being reabsorbed.
i thought that the pill would still curb the cramps, though. if not, maybe you'll have to go on really strong NSAIDs (Naprosyn et al). Other treatments include endometrial ablation, which means the tissue is removed. This is not something you want to have done unless absolutely necessary.
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Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000
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Yup, it's a pretty common gynecological disorder.
Basically, it means that bits of the endometrium (the lining of the uterus) have gone walkabout and taken root in places in the body where they shouldn't be. So each month they try to shed, but because they're not in the uterus, they can't leave the body properly - so you get lesions and inflammation, which can lead to very painful cramps, irregular bleeding etc.
The only available medical treatments are hormone treatments and/or surgery to remove the lesions. However, apparently some women find it's very responsive to diet and herbal treatments.
There's a great book by Ruth Trickey called "Women, Hormones and the Menstrual Cycle: Herbal and Medical Solutions from Adolescence to Menopause" which presents info on both medical and herbal approaches (to endo and lots of other gyn problems) in what seems like a fairly balanced way.
i was just wondering if that was a reasonably thing to say - that cramps that aren't responsive to the pill are usually caused by endometriosis.
the pill stopped the cramps for awhile, but they're back now. i thought it was just that my body chemistry had changed.
i decided to go off the pill anway, and my doctor gave me prescriptions for painkillers. i was just surprised that she mentioned endometriosis at all - i thought cramps were common, and i was under the impression that the pill helps with cramps, but doesn't always fully get rid of them.
As far as I know, endometriosis can't be definitively diagnosed without a laparoscopy, but it is certainly one possible cause of severe cramps. Whether your gyn was justified in the "probably" - I dunno.
Posts: 6944 | From: UK | Registered: May 2002
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I mean, I've always suffered with menstrual cramps. If I didn't take a strong painkiller (ibuprofen) I'd be suffering and feeling really quite ill. Since I've been on the pill I still have cramps, but I guess slightly better. Still have to take painkillers, mind.
I'd never thought for a moment that I might have endometriosis. Besides, isn't it usually accompanied by symptoms other than cramps. Acute cases are accompanied by some heavy duty bleeding. I once saw a programme that profiled a number of sufferers, and the stories they told - like suddenly being hit with a huge gush of blood, running into their shoes and onto the pavement... well, I felt terrible for them.
Anyway, I'm rambling, and of course I'm more than aware that there are degrees of severity. I don't think I'll personally push this as a possibility for me.
Has your doctor done any additional testing (such as drawing blood to check hormone levels)? My mom had endo, and along with it she had a pituitary gland problem that left her with an extremely high prolactin level. Which her doctor said contributed to the endo.
quote:Originally posted by Zanney: I don't mean to be a scaremonger, but if there is a possibility of it being endo, do get it properly checked out, as some cases of endo have been known to cause infertility.
Yours most likely isn't so severe, but it never hurts to be sure
Yea... I have endometriosis. I'm 15. I got diagnosed with it 2 months ago. I had a laparoscopy done. And guess what? I'm infertile. When I found out... I cried for days. It's terrible. Anyway... anyone who thinks they might have endometriosis NEEDS to find out exactly what they have.
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