What Effect Will Endometriosis Have On My Reproductive Health

If you have painful periods, spotting between periods, or even stomach distress, you may be living with endometriosis. It’s a condition that affects one in 10 women between puberty and menopause, the childbearing years. Dr. Jehuda Renan treats this common condition in a wide range of ways that depend on the severity of the condition and your reproductive plans.

What is endometriosis?

Endometrial tissue is a spongy blood-heavy tissue that lines a woman’s uterus. This tissue waits for a fertilized egg to implant. If no egg implants, hormones force the tissue to slough off the walls of the uterus and exit through the vagina as menstrual flow.

But sometimes, for reasons no one understands completely, the tissue doesn’t stay in the uterus. Tissue grows in the fallopian tubes or outside the uterus in the abdominal cavity, or even on muscles, your bladder, or your intestines. In very rare cases, endometrial tissue can enter the bloodstream and attach in other areas such as the lungs, brain, or skin.

Endometriosis problems

The uterus has an exit for unused endometrial tissue, but other organs don’t. So if the tissue begins to grow in your abdomen, or any other place outside your womb, the dead and dying tissue has nowhere to go. It can begin to build up, hardening and causing lesions in the abdominal cavity. These may cause pain and interfere with normal bowel function.

Endometrial cells in the fallopian tubes may take longer to work their way out of the tiny organs. This may cause spotting and bleeding between periods. If the tissue adheres to the ovaries, it can, in very rare cases, lead to ovarian cancer.

Reproductive issues

Unfortunately, one of the symptoms of endometriosis is difficulty conceiving a child. These benign growths can affect fertility in several different ways.

If the endometrial tissue grows around the ovaries, it may interfere with the ability of the ovaries to eject ripened eggs. It may also affect the egg’s ability to reach the fallopian tubes.

If the endometrial tissue grows in the fallopian tubes, it may block the sperm’s access to an egg, or it may block a fertilized egg from getting to the uterus.

In some cases, a fertilized egg may implant in endometrial tissue in the fallopian tube. This is called an ectopic pregnancy, and it can be dangerous. If left untreated, the growing egg can rupture the fallopian tube, leading to bleeding and reducing your chances of conceiving a child in the future.

There are also several theories that suggest endometriosis affects the endometrial cells left in the uterus. In some cases, the lining may be damaged by long-term lesions or may be too thin to hold a developing egg.

Treatment

Thankfully, you don’t have to suffer from endometriosis. Dr. Renan offers a wide range of treatments that can help you feel better and maybe make it easier for your body to conceive the child you’ve always wanted.

You may benefit from pain relievers and hormonal therapy to reduce the symptoms of endometriosis. Using ultrasound, Dr. Renan examines your pelvic area to locate any cysts that might be interfering with conception.

If necessary, Dr. Renan can perform laparoscopic laser surgery to remove cysts, clearing the way for new life. This is a minor surgery that Dr. Renan has performed many times with great success. He makes a small incision near your belly button and inserts the laparoscopy tools that let him look at your organs and take a small sample of the tissue, if necessary. He can even get rid of cysts and lesions at the same time.

Whether you have already been diagnosed with endometriosis, or you are concerned that you might be suffering from the condition, Dr. Renan can help you. Simply contact him at his Tarzana, California, office and make an appointment to explore your options.

You may be cuddling your baby next year.

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