Endometriosis is a disease of the female reproductive system. This condition can cause tissue from the inner lining of the uterine wall to grow outside the uterine cavity. Endometriosis occurs when endometrial tissue grows outside the uterus.
If a woman has endometriosis, the tissue also goes through a process of thickening and shedding, which is similar to the menstrual cycle. However, the blood eventually settles and cannot come out because it is located outside the uterus so that it can irritate the surrounding tissue.
Endometriosis is divided into four grades, which depend on the location, amount, size, and depth of the endometrial lining. The following are the four stages of endometriosis and their characteristics:
Minimal endometriosis. Small and shallow endometrial tissue appears in the ovaries. Inflammation can also occur around the pelvic cavity.
Mild endometriosis. There is small, shallow endometrial tissue in the ovaries and pelvic walls.
Intermediate endometriosis. There is some quite deep endometrial tissue in the ovaries.
Severe endometriosis. There is deep endometrial tissue in the ovaries, pelvic wall, fallopian tubes, and intestines.
Causes and Symptoms of Endometriosis
Endometriosis is thought to be related to a disorder of the immune system, or a reversed flow of menstrual blood. This condition is generally characterized by several symptoms, such as:
Pain in the lower abdomen and pelvis.
Excessive blood volume during menstruation.
Pain during bowel movements or urination.
The choice of treatment method depends on the severity and whether the patient still wants to have children. Treatment for endometriosis includes:
Administration of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
Hormone therapy to stop the production of the hormone estrogen.
Surgical procedures, such as laparoscopy, laparotomy, hysterectomy.