As many as 176 million women around the world live with chronic pain and other symptoms of endometriosis during their childbearing years. At Midatlantic OBGYN, with offices in Centreville and Leesburg, Virginia, the team offers the latest diagnostic and treatment technologies to manage endometriosis and help you find relief from your symptoms. If you have chronic pelvic pain or are struggling with infertility, call the Midatlantic OBGYN office nearest you or schedule an appointment online now.
Endometriosis describes the growth of the uterine lining, called the endometrium, outside the uterus. This tissue can grow on your ovaries, fallopian tubes, bladder, and other pelvic organs.
Wherever the tissue grows, it continues to act like it does normally – thickening and breaking down during your monthly menstrual cycle. However, tissue outside of the uterus becomes trapped and has no way to exit your body.
Entrapped tissue can cause a variety of symptoms, some severe enough to interfere with your reproductive and general health.
Endometriosis symptoms vary from woman to woman. One of the most common symptoms includes persistent pain that can worsen over time. Many with endometriosis also experience intense pain during sex, bowel movements, and during their periods.
Other common symptoms of endometriosis include:
You may also experience recurring digestive issues, like constipation, nausea, and bloating.
When you have unexplained symptoms that relate to endometriosis, your Midatlantic OBGYN provider reviews your personal and family medical history and discusses how severe your pain and other symptoms are.
During a pelvic exam, your physician may be able to feel abnormal tissue growth outside of your uterus. To identify smaller areas of endometrial tissue, you may need an ultrasound, which the team performs in the office to quickly determine if your symptoms relate to endometriosis or another condition.
The team at Midatlantic OBGYN also offers laparoscopy services, a minimally invasive diagnostic procedure that involves the use of a special instrument with an attached camera. Your provider inserts a laparoscope in through the abdominal wall and the camera sends back real-time images of your uterus and surrounding structures, so your provider can identify abnormal tissue growth.
The right treatment for endometriosis depends on a variety of factors, including your medical history, your family plans, and the severity of your symptoms.
Initially, your Midatlantic OBGYN provider may recommend hormonal birth control to ease pain during your period. This is also the preferred method for women who still wish to become pregnant.
If medicine isn’t enough to relieve endometriosis symptoms, your provider may recommend a minimally invasive procedure to destroy the lining of your uterus.
Endometrial ablation uses heat energy to destroy excess endometrial tissue. You may be a candidate for treatment with NovaSure® or a hydrothermal ablation procedure, which are minimally invasive techniques that target and destroy the uterine lining and abnormal tissue growth.
Following an endometrial ablation, you won’t be able to become pregnant. You may also need to start hormone therapy to prevent new tissue growth.
To schedule a diagnostic evaluation for endometriosis, call the Midatlantic OBGYN office nearest you or request an appointment online today.