Endometriosis and Infertility - Knowing the Link

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Endometriosis is an illness by which several tissues have spread in another place in the ovaries or abdominal cavity that grows outside the uterus. These tissues are usually attached inside the uterine cavity and it is called endometrium. It induces pain to most women and it is one of the major causes of infertility. Statistically, 4 out of 10 infertile women are suffering from endometriosis and majority of 1 out of 10 women who contracted endometriosis are not infertile.

One way to diagnose endometriosis is to carry out surgical procedure called laparoscopy. This is a method by, which a surgeon can look inside the abdominal cavity of his patient. Almost all of the cases of endometriosis are not severe. Though mild endometriosis also manifests abdominal and pelvic pain (cramping before and during periods), lower back and stomach pain, excessive bleeding during periods, pelvic pain during intercourse, fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, nausea and infertility—these symptoms can be experienced none at all except in moderate and severe endometriosis.

Infertility is often linked to mild endometriosis while severe endometriosis linked to pelvic scarring and distortion of pelvic anatomy. If the ovaries are enclosed with cysts coming from endometriosis it can block the tubes leading to it that will result to severe damage of the fallopian tubes. In other circumstances, the eggs in the ovaries can be destroyed by the cysts reducing the egg quantity and quality. Any of these abnormalities can result to infertility.

Treatment for endometriosis is usually customized and depends upon the specific needs of the patient. There are no shortcuts and the specific treatment depends upon the many factors that contribute to its severity. For mild endometriosis, drug medications can hinder the growth and can ease the pain in female patient. Laparoscopy surgery to remove the lesions that cause the pain is advisable but not required. To treat infertility with mild to moderate endometriosis, it is advisable to use the controlled ovarian hyperstimulation with intrauterine insemination to have a better chance of pregnancy. Treating severe endometriosis does not increase the chance of success. The only logical treatment however is through surgery. And surgery could only offer 1.5-2% pregnancy rates per month. Infertility with severe endometriosis is repeatedly resistant to medication involving ovarian stimulation and intrauterine insemination. If the pelvic anatomy is deformed, artificial insemination would be a failure. Therefore only IFV is the only method left for conception. Pregnancy success rates are high if the patient is young enough to create enough eggs during ovarian stimulation.

Keep in mind that endometriosis is sometimes associated with pelvic pain like pelvic inflammatory disease or ovarian cysts and it may be confused with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Always consult a doctor so that you could know the best medication for you.

Connie Mather is an infertility expert. For more great information on endometriosis and infertility , visit www.forumoninfertility.com .

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