The disease where answers are needed, research is required and understanding is seriously lacking
This article is about raising awareness of endometriosis as so many have still not heard about this disease unless it affects them or a member of their family. But even with increased awareness many do not understand the gravity and seriousness of this disease ..... they think its just a bad period ......
The real truth is that doctors, scientists and researchers do not really know what endometriosis is. They do know what the end results are, but these are not the same for every woman. This disease cannot be caught like other diseases. It is an insidious disease that gradually develops and symptoms creep up and increase over time.
Fundamentally, endometriosis is a chronic and serious physical malfunction, originating in the reproductive organs, striking millions of women in their most formative years. It is a complex disabling disease, with many symptoms, and has huge repercussions in a woman’s’ life.
Endometriosis causes very bad pain for most, may cause infertility, causes damage to the organs in the pelvic cavity, and leads to far-reaching life changes, distress and anguish.
The term endometriosis is derived from ancient Greek:
endo means inside
metra mean womb
osis means disease or abnormality
Little progress has been made in the medical field in relation to obtaining timely diagnosis or successful treatment - despite its significance as an increasing world-wide health problem. Most of the treatment available today revolves around the management of pain, drug intervention of the reproductive cycle and surgery to cut out the diseased tissue and removal of adhesions that can occur in the abdomen.
There is currently no mainstream medical procedure that is guaranteed to remove the disease for good. In many cases, after chemical or surgical intervention, there may be a short period of relief, but often the disease returns. This leads to women have recurring surgeries – with an added issue of additional scarring caused by surgery.
This disease is fast becoming a scourge among females of child-bearing age and beyond. Let’s look at some facts and statistics:
It is an invisible disease. Most of the symptoms are internal, unless a woman is having a bad flare with endo-belly causing severe abdominal distention (and much discomfort). There are no tangible outward manifestations with it. Women do not walk around with a limp, or have to use crutches to get around, or have to use oxygen cylinders to aid breathing. There are simply no real external physical clues. Which is why it is not taken seriously.
Endometriosis is a classic invisible illness
Therefore, most doctors dismiss these women as being hysterical, hypochondriacs, or its ‘all in the head’. It is only when women insist on further investigation due to relentless pain or serious problems with conception that they can then get to a specialist to look into her health problems further.
Even then, this disease can only be diagnosed for certain by having an investigative operation that physically allows the surgeon to see inside the woman’s body with a laparoscopy. It is then, and only then that all is revealed.
In some cases what can be found inside a woman’s abdomen can look like a battle-field. There can be cysts all over the abdominal cavity, adhesions, and some of these adhesions can actually stick internal organs together.
But for nearly every woman who is told that ‘the cause of her problems has been found’, this can be a huge relief. Simply because she now knows that there is a real and tangible reason why she has felt so awful and been in so much pain.
She now knows what it is. She can start to find out about it and get herself informed. She can now take action for her own health - NOW THAT SHE KNOWS WHAT IT IS. This is endometriosis.
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Mayoclinic.org - endometriosis