Endometriosis is an inflammatory disease that occurs when tissue similar to the lining of the uterus attaches to organs outside the uterus and creates small foci. Because the tissue is similar to the endometrium, it bleeds the same way as the endometrium during menstruation, which can cause tremendous pain and lead to chronic inflammation.
Approximately ten percent of people with a uterus suffer from endometriosis. Despite being so common, the disease is relatively unknown to the public. The lack of knowledge about endometriosis means that it can take many years for women to receive a diagnosis and treatment. There is no known cure for the disease but it can be alleviated with treatment and some women have seen great improvement through dietary changes.
Common symptoms of endometriosis
The most common symptom is severe pain in the stomach and abdomen during menstruation or larger parts of the menstrual cycle, but can also mean pain in the back that radiates down the legs, pain in the vagina and stomach during intercourse, symptoms similar to urinary tract infection, IBS-like symptoms such as diarrhea and constipation and that it can hurt when you go to the toilet. Other symptoms may be that you feel generally tired or nauseous.
What causes endometriosis?
The causes of endometriosis are not clear. There are many theories about the causes but no thesis has been fully supported by sufficient studies. Much points to the fact that the disease is to some extent hereditary.