Endometriosis is a painful medical condition which happens to almost 6% to 10% of women. In this condition, endometrial tissues or uterine lining emerges around the reproductive areas which affect the ability of a woman to get pregnant. Therefore, in this article, let’s have a look at how endometriosis can hamper your chances of getting pregnant and how you can improve your condition.
What Is Endometriosis?
The word endometriosis comes from the endometrium. It is the uterus lining of your body that generates eggs every month for implantation. If you do not conceive then your body breaks down endometrium which then causes menstruation. However, when endometrium reaches outside of the fallopian tube or other areas of your body, it causes endometriosis. Generally, the hormones generated in your body during your pregnancy period causes additional tissue growth which causes bleeding in the uterus after bleeding down. As the broken tissues and blood have nowhere to go outside of your body, it might cause cysts, scar tissues, and adhesions after a certain time period. It will cause inflammation, irritation, and pain in those parts of your body.
Stages Of Endometriosis
Depending on the exact spot, extent, depth and size of the endometriosis implants, and the presence or the severity of scar tissue, we can classify endometriosis into four stages.
Endometriosis that falls under minimal or mild will be usually shallow implants and mild scarring. Endometriosis that falls under moderate and severe generally paves the way for cysts and more severe scarring. Even though the degree of symptoms a woman with endometriosis experiences has no relation to the class of endometriosis, infertility is usually associated with stage IV endometriosis.
What Causes Endometriosis?
The reasons for endometriosis are yet to be unearthed. But the researchers are studying certain possibilities which include:
- Menstruation Problems: One of the chances of endometriosis is the flowing back of the menstrual tissues to your abdomen and getting implanted.
- Immunity Issues: Those women whose immunity power is low will struggle to get the endometrial tissues outside their uterus.
- Heredity: There is also a case of family history as well as a woman having a family history of endometriosis is more like to get affected by the condition.
- Surgery: During certain surgeries like hysterectomy or C section, endometrial tissue gets misplaced at times.
It is quite difficult to find out whether the endometrium is getting outside of the fallopian tube or not as the symptoms of it is very much similar to the regular menstrual pains you get.
What Are The Symptoms Of Endometriosis?
Some of the common symptoms of endometriosis include:
- Pelvic pain that aggravates during the periods
- Severe cramping
- Severe fatigue
- Irregular urination
- Unusual bowel movements
- Pain during intercourse
- Uneasiness during and before menstruation
Also, there are some women who face problems like fibromyalgia, eczema, and asthma with endometriosis. The severity of the signs and symptoms are not linked with the number of tissue. You can have a few spots but the symptoms can be severe or you can have many spots with lesser symptoms. Moreover, many women do not realize that they are affected by endometriosis until they get tested for their infertility problem.
How Does Endometriosis Affect Fertility?
Generally, most of the women who suffer from endometriosis get pregnant in a natural way but only one-third of all women struggle to conceive because the tissues block the eggs from getting into the uterus. Apart from that, these tissues can also damage the sperms or eggs because of the inflammation of the body that affects the hormonal balance and does not let you conceive.
How To Improve Your Chances Of Getting Pregnant With Endometriosis?
Generally, the doctors might prescribe you medications which will enhance the number of pregnancy hormones in your body. Moreover, following a proper diet plan, exercise regime, detoxification, and supplementation will increase your chances of conceiving even after having endometriosis.
- Maintain the right weight
- Make diet plan rich with vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean proteins
- Light exercises like aerobics and waling every day
Furthermore, you need to keep in mind that younger women have more chances of conceiving with endometriosis than women over 35.
How Does Endometriosis Affect Pregnancy?
Mostly, at the time of conceiving, decidualization of endometrial tissues takes place, which results in the mitigation of the endometriosis symptoms. But, in other cases, it can cause certain complications which include:
- High blood pressure level
- Bleeding even after the 24th week of your pregnancy
- Premature delivery
- Cesarean delivery
To avert these conditions, you need to contact your doctor whenever you find the above-discussed symptoms.
How Is Endometriosis Diagnosed?
Endometriosis symptoms are quite similar to other medical conditions such as STD (Sexually Transmitted Disease), urinary tract problem, or pelvic inflammatory diseases. So, it is quite difficult to make a proper diagnosis of endometriosis. Hence, your doctor might ask you to go for the following tests:
- Imaging Test: By using sound waves of high-frequency, the images of your internal organs will be taken to examine the possibility of scars or ovarian cysts. Also, your doctor might suggest you go for an MRI.
- Pelvic Examination: By manually checking the pelvic areas for scars and cysts behind the uterus, your doctor will look for endometriosis.
- Medicines: Even if the aforementioned tests do not give the result then the doctor might suggest you take medications such as hormonal medications for birth control, GnRH agonist, and some other. Remember, medications will only relieve the pain and it will work till you take them.
- Laparoscopy: This test will be used to examine your pelvic region by your doctor to find out endometriosis tissues.
What Is The Treatment For Endometriosis?
- Medications: If you are looking to conceive then the doctor would suggest you go for hormonal birth control medication and if you are looking to conceive then your doctor might prescribe you GnRH agonist. Intrauterine device or IUD can also help to stop the bleeding and pain temporarily.
- Surgery: This is for the severe cases and if you are facing fertility issues and medications are not giving your respite then surgery in the endometriosis prone area can be an option as well.
- Other Treatments: You can use over-the-counter medications to stop the pain or go for natural therapies like chiropractic treatment and acupuncture. Remember, these treatments may work alone or along with the ones mentioned earlier.
How Can You Prevent Endometriosis?
Preventing endometriosis from happening is not possible but with proper diet, exercises, sleep, and relaxation, you can manage the symptoms, discomfort, and pain. The condition will improve after menopause.
Finally, a positive thing that you should remember is women with endometriosis are still getting pregnant and delivering healthy babies. Therefore, when you are trying to conceive, consult with your doctor to find solutions about getting pregnant in a healthy and safe manner.