Women who have endometriosis and want children are not necessarily out of luck. This condition can make pregnancy difficult to achieve, but it is not impossible. Endometriosis is a condition where the tissue that usually lines the inside of the uterus begins to grow outside it.
This excess tissue behaves like the lining of the uterus. At the end of the cycle, it will break apart and bleed, but since the blood has nowhere to go, surrounding areas can become inflamed or swollen. This can lead to scarring and lesions. The ovaries are most often affected by endometriosis.
Infertility can occur when this condition affects the ovaries and/or the fallopian tubes. Endometriosis in the fallopian tube lining can prevent the egg from traveling to the uterus. This condition can also damage the egg or sperm, although why this happens is unknown.
Types of Endometriosis
The tissue of the endometrium usually grows in three main locations. The type of endometriosis is related to its location:
- Superficial peritoneal lesion – Lesions on the peritoneum, a thin film lining the pelvic cavity, are the most common type.
- Endometrioma (ovarian lesion) – More difficult to treat, these are dark, fluid-filled cysts that form deep within the ovaries. They are sometimes called chocolate cysts due to their color, and they can damage healthy tissue.
- Deeply infiltrating endometriosis – This type of endometriosis grows under the peritoneum. It can involve the bowels or bladder and is less common, affecting 1-5% of women who have endometriosis.
Symptoms of Endometriosis
Endometriosis does not always present with symptoms, but when it does, they may include:
- back pain during your menses
- blood in the stool or urine
- diarrhea or constipation
- lingering fatigue
- painful sex
- painful urination or bowel movements
- severe menstrual cramps
- unusual or heavy bleeding during periods
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should seek medical attention so the cause can be determined.
Treatment of Endometriosis
This condition cannot be cured; however, surgery or medication may help you feel better. Over-the-counter pain relievers are used to treat the pain.
Treatment for endometriosis-related infertility can include freezing your eggs to preserve them since endometriosis can affect the ovarian reserve. In vitro fertilization is another treatment that can help with pregnancy. Fertility medication may also be recommended.
Even though it may be challenging to achieve pregnancy with endometriosis, with help from the fertility experts at Neway Fertility, your chances can be increased. Contact Neway Fertility today to schedule an examination and consultation with one of our fertility experts.