Endometriosis is a progressive gynecological disease that affects about 2% of women. It is characterized by the presence of endometrial segments (or endometrium) that join the space outside the uterus, on the genital bodies such as the body of the uterus or the ovaries, but also on non-genital parts such as the peritoneum, the membrane lining the abdominal wall or rectum. A disease whose origin is at present unexplained, it mainly affects young women up to 35 years old. The endometrium falling under the influence of sex hormones cycle, endometriosis will also be subject to these changes, which explains some of its symptoms.
Amongst the clinical signs of endometriosis, are lower abdominal pain and bleeding of the genitals. Infertility is a common complication and pain during intercourse is often reported. In the case of mild endometriosis, fragments attach to the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes. In a more severe form, cysts (endometriomas) are formed in the uterus or ovaries. The disease generally resolves itself spontaneously after menopause.
The diagnosis of endometriosis is based on:
- a thorough gynecological examination;
- an ultrasound whose aim is to detect endometriomas;
- Sometimes, an MRI;
- laparoscopy, which is the examination of the abdominal cavity using an endoscope.
Laparoscopy has two significant advantages:
- formal recognition of endometriosis;
- the possibility of eliminating the endometriosis during exploration.
The treatment of endometriosis consists of reducing the undesirable tissue. Given the influence of hormones, drugs that are contrary to the proliferation of tissue are prescribed. A doctor may resort to laparoscopy, which also has the advantage of possibly removing the endometrioma or other adhesions between organs.
Original article published by
. Translated by Jeff