Women with Endometriosis, a disease that affects millions of women worldwide, often goes undiagnosed. Experts are raising awareness about the condition, which affects Ten percent of women of reproductive age globally. In India, the World Health Organization estimates that 2.5 crore women have endometriosis. However, delayed or incorrect diagnoses are often due to a lack of knowledge and understanding.
Dr. Teji Dawane, a Senior Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Motherhood Hospitals, states that endometriosis can affect the lining of the uterus, ovaries, or fallopian tubes, often causing heavy bleeding, uncomfortable cramps, and pelvic pain, which can lead to adhesions, cysts, and infertility. Estrogen can exacerbate these symptoms by spreading them.
Early diagnosis is crucial for effective management of endometriosis. It is important to identify any symptoms, particularly those that occur around menstruation, such as bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, nausea, and lethargy, and to seek medical attention for routine check-ups or follow-up appointments. Diagnostic techniques such as ultrasonography, pelvic exam, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or laparoscopy can be used to detect the condition.
While endometriosis cannot be prevented, adopting a healthier lifestyle can help reduce the risk of developing it. Some of the lifestyle changes that can be made include reducing alcohol and caffeine consumption, using hormonal birth control methods with lower oestrogen doses, and engaging in regular exercise to maintain low body fat levels. Living a healthy lifestyle and not smoking can also help to thicken the lining of the uterus during the menstrual cycle.
Endometriosis can have a significant impact on a woman’s physical, mental, and social well-being. Therefore, it is important to increase awareness of the condition to promote early detection and diagnosis.