Painful, heavy periods can be a sign of endometriosis, a condition that could lead to infertility as well as significantly affecting your quality of life. If your periods are heavy or painful, the highly skilled OB/GYN specialists at AllSafe Medical Group can help. At their three locations in Los Angeles, Torrance, and Downey, California, the AllSafe Medical Group team provides exceptional gynecological services for women of all ages. Call today to schedule a consultation, or book an appointment online.
Endometriosis is a condition that develops in a woman’s reproductive organs but can spread to other tissues. It causes painful menstruation and heavy bleeding and is a leading cause of infertility.
The lining of your uterus is called the endometrium, and it’s the tissue that sheds when you menstruate. If you have endometriosis, sections of endometrial tissue called implants start to grow outside of your uterus. The most common places for endometrial implants to grow are the:
The problem with these endometrial implants is that they follow the same cycle as the endometrium in your uterus. Therefore, as you move through your monthly cycle, the implants start to thicken and swell.
The implants shed and bleed during your period, but because they’re growing where they can’t escape, the blood and tissue remain trapped in your body. This can cause severe pain and can lead to the development of scar tissue and organ adhesions.
Many women who have endometriosis experience severe pelvic pain that gets worse when they’re having their period. Other common symptoms include:
Some women only have mild symptoms or may even be unaware they have endometriosis until their doctor finds it during investigations into problems such as infertility.
The reason some women get endometriosis and most don’t isn’t clear, although there are several possible explanations. One possibility is that endometrial cells are flowing back into the pelvic region during menstruation. Another explanation is that embryonic cells might mistakenly change into endometrial cells during fetal development.
Endometriosis is more common if you have risk factors such as:
Endometriosis usually develops in the late teens or early 20s.
Initial treatments for endometriosis are likely to involve conservative approaches such as pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory medications. Your OB/GYN at AllSafe Medical Group might also prescribe hormone therapy, such as:
If your symptoms aren’t improving with these treatments, the AllSafe Medical Group team can operate to remove the endometrial implants. Conservative surgery can preserve your reproductive organs and improve your fertility.
If you are trying to conceive, you might also need fertility treatments such as medication to stimulate your ovaries.
If you have symptoms of endometriosis, call AllSafe Medical Group today, or book an appointment online.