Endometriosis affects about one in 10 women in the United States, and while this number may provide some comfort, dealing with this often painful condition is anything but comfortable. At Capital Women’s Care in Rockville, Maryland, Judith Gurdian, MD, Michelle Spector, MD, Tanya Ghatan, MD, and the rest of the team has extensive expertise in helping women gain the upper hand on endometriosis. For expert diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis, call the office or schedule an appointment using the online booking tool.
Endometriosis is a condition in which the lining of your uterus -- the endometrium -- grows outside your uterus, often covering nearby organs and tissue, including your:
Under normal circumstances, your endometrium prepares itself each month to host a fertilized egg, or shed out if one doesn’t arrive, creating your menstrual cycle. The problem with endometriosis is that when the lining is outside your uterus, it follows this same cycle and has nowhere to go when it comes time to shed out. Over time, this creates adhesions and scar tissue in the area, which can interfere with your reproductive organs.
Endometriosis typically develops between the ages of 25 and 35, during a woman’s prime reproductive years.
Medical researchers are unclear as to the exact cause of endometriosis.
The biggest symptom of endometriosis is pain, especially during your menstrual cycle. This pain can develop a few days before your period and last a few days after. You may also experience:
This last point is worth highlighting. Approximately one-third to one-half of women with endometriosis experience problems with fertility. In fact, endometriosis is often first diagnosed when women seek treatment for infertility.
Since there’s no known cause of endometriosis, there’s no cure. Still, there’s much that the providers at Capital Women’s Care can do to offset the effects that this condition may have on you. These treatments include:
The direction of your treatment depends largely upon your goals. If your goal is to find relief from the pain, hormone therapies can help. However, hormone therapies aren’t appropriate if you’re trying to get pregnant. In these cases, your doctor may decide to try and remove some of the scar tissue and adhesions, or she may discuss other infertility treatments with you, such as in vitro fertilization.
No two cases are alike, so it’s best to sit down with your doctor to review your options and your goals.
To get expert care in managing your endometriosis, call Capital Women’s Care, or use the online scheduling tool to arrange an appointment.