BLOGS from St. Anthony
Endometriosis affects an estimated 1 in 10 women during their reproductive years (ie. usually between the ages of 15 to 49). March has been recognized as National Endometriosis Month. The Endometriosis Association began Endometriosis Awareness Month in 1993. It’s now observed worldwide through activities such as education, fundraising, and marches. While Endometriosis is common, oftentimes little is known about it. Here are some facts, according to Endometriosis.org.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue similar to the lining inside the uterus (called “the endometrium”), is found outside the uterus, where it induces a chronic inflammatory reaction that may result in scar tissue. It is primarily found on the pelvic peritoneum, on the ovaries, in the recto-vaginal septum, on the bladder, and the bowel.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms of endometriosis include painful periods, painful ovulation, pain during or after sexual intercourse, heavy bleeding, chronic pelvic pain, fatigue, and infertility, and can impact general physical, mental, and social well-being.
What is the treatment?
There is no known cure and, although endometriosis can be treated effectively with drugs, most treatments are not suitable for long-term use due to side-effects. Surgery can be effective to remove endometriosis lesions and scar tissue, but success rates are dependent on the extent of the disease and the surgeon’s skills. Pregnancy may relieve symptoms but is not a cure for the disease. Hysterectomy, with surgical removal of all the disease at the same time, may relieve symptoms, but may not be a “definitive cure” either. Removal of the ovaries at the same time as a hysterectomy is performed increases the chances of pain relief but also results in immediate menopause.
What is the cause?
There is no known cause of endometriosis but it is highly likely that certain genes predispose women to develop the disease. Thus, women have a higher risk of developing endometriosis if their mother and/or sister(s) are also affected. It is possible that age when the menstrual period starts, other gynecologic factors, and environmental exposures influence whether a woman is affected.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has altered the format of the usual activities, EndoFound is planning to hold several virtual events in March 2021, including:
- The Mind, Body, Soul Wellness Challenge is planned for March 1 through 14. This challenge involves completing daily wellness activities, such as exercising, journaling, meditating, and volunteering, to earn points and spread awareness about endometriosis. You can track your progress on a live leaderboard, and prizes are given to the top scorers.
- The Video Awareness Campaign provides a platform to share your story and help squash the stigma of endometriosis. This campaign will feature celebrity Olivia Culpo and runs from March 15 through 31, 2021.
- The Global Endo24 Virtual Medical Conference is a 24-hour event that’s designed for patients with endometriosis in partnership with the International Society for Gynecologic Endoscopy. It’s scheduled for March 20 through 21, 2021.
- The International Patient Conference 2021 will take place on March 19 and 21. This patient-centered, virtual meeting will equip patients with the tools and information they need to live their best lives with endometriosis.
Call St. Anthony Clinic at any of our locations to schedule an appointment with one of our knowledgeable, caring providers to start you on the course toward diagnosis and healing.
St. Anthony Regional Hospital offers support services such as registered dietitians, social workers, mental health, education, chaplains, and oncology certified nurses to name a few. St. Anthony Regional Hospital (Carroll, IA) is dedicated to improving the health of the people we serve. We believe in providing high-quality, healthcare services responsive to the needs of our patients. For more information, visit our website or call us at 712-792-3581. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
- national endometriosis awareness month