Endometriosis is a menstruation disorder that affects 200 million women worldwide and can be extremely painful and difficult to manage every month. At Memorial Women’s Specialists in Houston, Texas, Mina Sinacori, MD, MPH, FACOG, and M. Bruce Christopherson, MD, FACOG, are experienced in diagnosing and treating endometriosis so you can get relief from its debilitating symptoms. If you have endometriosis, request an appointment using the online booking system or call the office today.

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What is endometriosis?

Endometriosis occurs when the lining of the uterus — the endometrium — grows outside the uterus. Over time, this endometrial tissue may grow around your reproductive organs, including your ovaries, and may also encompass pelvic tissue and your bowels.

In rare cases, the endometrial tissue grows in other areas of your body beyond the pelvic region.

Regardless of where endometrial tissue grows outside the uterus, it still behaves like it’s inside your uterus. This means that every month, the tissue thickens, breaks down, and bleeds when you have your period.

The problem is that all this tissue outside of the uterus stays trapped inside your body with no way out. As a result, you may experience intense pain during your period, as well as potential bowel and urinary problems.

The exact cause of endometriosis is unknown and there’s no cure for this common, painful condition. However, effective treatment of symptoms is available.

What are common signs of endometriosis?

If you experience any of the following symptoms, you may have endometriosis:

  • Long, heavy periods
  • Terrible abdominal cramps during your period
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Painful sex
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Infertility
  • Urinary and bowel problems
  • Severe pelvic pain
  • Spotting between periods
  • Bloating

Endometriosis often causes digestive issues such as diarrhea or constipation, especially during your period.

What treatments help relieve endometriosis?

Since there is no cure for endometriosis, treatments focus on helping you manage your symptoms each month. The team at Memorial Women’s Specialists may recommend hormonal birth control that allows you to have only a few periods each year, or no periods at all. This prevents the tissue outside your uterus from shedding and remaining inside your body.

Other treatments that may reduce pain and bleeding include intrauterine devices (IUDs), hormone medications that still allow you to become pregnant, or surgery.

Typically, surgery for endometriosis is a last resort and is only used in severe situations where other treatments haven’t been effective.

There isn’t a single solution for endometriosis pain and discomfort, so your provider works with you to find a treatment protocol that’s best for your specific situation.

If you suffer from endometriosis symptoms, schedule an appointment at Memorial Women’s Specialists by phone or use the online booking system.