What is Endometriosis

I experience pain daily. Whether it’s a migraine, tight neck/shoulder muscles, upset stomach, nausea, bloating, cramps (located in liver, intestines, ovaries, or bladder), or ovarian cysts rupturing. My pain can be in one area or multiple. I have to wake up and choose how to manage my pain every, single, day. Endometriosis is the cause of these symptoms, but what exactly is it? Why does it affect so many different parts of the body?

Endometriosis is an inflammatory chronic disease where lesions, similar to the endometrial tissue lining of the uterus, is found outside the uterus. That’s the short, dumbed-down, definition. According to The Center for Endometriosis, these lesions can be found in multiple areas in the body: eyes, heart, liver, stomach, intestines, kidney, bladder, colon, ovaries, Fallopian tubes, and the uterus (Albee, R. B. (n.d.). Introduction to endometriosis. The Center for Endometriosis Care. Retrieved September 23, 2021, from https://centerforendo.com/introduction-to-endometriosis#introduction-to-endometriosis-1.). It is rare to find Endo beyond the pelvic region; however, not impossible. The only way to discover if you have Endometriosis and if it’s migrated to other parts of the body is laparoscopy surgery or a biopsy of said found lesions.

When lesions are found on other organs it causes inflammation. The organ stops performing optimally (Braundmeier-Fleming , A. (2018, January 25). Inflammation: A possible new source for early detection of endometriosis. Endometriosis : Causes – Symptoms – Diagnosis – and Treatment. Retrieved September 23, 2021, from https://www.endofound.org/inflammation-a-possible-new-source-for-early-detection-of-endometriosis.) and the body reacts to fix the problem. Result = lots of unwanted symptoms: bloating, fatigue, insomnia, PMS/mood swings, cramping, issues with bowels, pain in liver/gallbladder, UTI’s, and the list goes on.

At this point in time, one in ten women have Endometriosis. It is hard to diagnose and takes an average of seven years to get a proper diagnosis (Endometriosis: A complex disease. The Center for Endometriosis Care. (n.d.). Retrieved September 23, 2021, from https://centerforendo.com/endometriosis-understanding-a-complex-disease/.). I was diagnosed with this disease in May of 2018. They identified it on my uterus only. But there was scar tissue on both of my ovaries. This would suggest I did have Endometriosis there at some point. The scar tissue was possibly Endometriosis which became a cyst that eventually ruptured (from my history of experience I’ve had cysts rupture and they are incredibly painful).

The Center for Endometriosis confirms this by saying, “The tissue surrounding the lesion can begin to break down and bleed. The body’s natural reaction is to try to cover this raw area with scar tissue (also called adhesion). But if active endometriosis becomes trapped beneath adhesion, pain and pressure can result. A large walled-off area (frequently an ovary) can lose it’s central blood supply. Then degeneration and destruction of the localized blood can create a cystic mass called an endometrioma” (Albee, R. B. (n.d.). Introduction to endometriosis. The Center for Endometriosis Care. Retrieved September 23, 2021, from https://centerforendo.com/introduction-to-endometriosis#introduction-to-endometriosis-1).

My gynecologist, who is an amazing doctor, isn’t a specialist for Endometriosis. They have over 40 years of experience in gynecology, but they didn’t investigate other areas of my body during the laparoscopy surgery to confirm migration of the disease. I theorize that since my partial hysterectomy in October of 2018, that I do have lesions in other areas of my body because of the symptoms I experience, still to this day.





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