Here I go again, once more intrigued by Endometriosis growing in odd places inside the body. Today I’m going to focus on the appendix. I’ve read that many women have their appendix removed because physicians may confuse Endometriosis pain for the symptoms of appendicitis. But on Tuesday an article hit my email about Endometriosis growing on the appendix…and I became obsessed.
Please remember: I don’t write this to scare you, or freak you out, or say that all of your right-sided abdominal pain is from Appendix Endo. Take a deep breath – I like to document these things in case anyone would like to discuss it further with their healthcare providers so they may be aware during surgery. Appendiceal Endometriosis is considered extremely rare and it is suspected that only 1-3% of all cases of Endometriosis involve the appendix. But…knowledge is power.
An article published in the December 2016 issue of the Journal of Participatory Medicine focused on women with Endometriosis tracking their symptoms, diet, etc. In this day and age, there are several smartphone applications that can help you do this. Or…find your own system.
I myself use Google Slides to track my daily food & drink intake (and bowel movements), as well as any pain or symptoms I experience, and sexual activity and pain. I’m a visual kind of person, so I also have an image that I draw little red squares where I have pain…These slideshows may come in handy at future doctor’s appointments – not to mention help me understand what may (or may not) exacerbate my symptoms. It’s also how I learned that strawberries (mmmm delicious strawberries) really, really, REALLY wreak havoc on my bowels…ohmigawd.
Some of you may have read my previous blog about Cesarean scars and Endometriosis. In the studies referenced in that blog entry, all of the women complained of bumps or lumps or pain in their c-section scars. Turns out they had developed Endometriosis in their scar tissue; likely the cells were transferred during the surgical procedure.
The Journal of Restorative Medicine has published an article by Dr. Edward Lichen in their December 2016 compilation about non-surgical treatment of Endometriosis. You can read the article, in it’s entirety, by clicking on the link under “Resources,” but I wanted to give a brief overview of my interpretation:
Causation continues to be a mystery. An overview of the nine theories of causation is given.
DNA research is ongoing.
Estrogen plays a role. Many women with Endometriosis cannot opt for estrogen replacement therapy (even if post-menopausal) due to high recurrence rates of estrogen stimulation.
Xenoestrogens, dioxins, and endocrine disruptors increase inflammation and can cause Endometriosis to develop/recur.
Note: this is about eating eggs. If you’re looking for info on Endometriosis and freezing your eggs for fertility treatments, click here.
So you may know a lot of the dietary restrictions many people choose to follow with Endometriosis. I’ve heard “don’t eat eggs,” and “eat eggs!” I LOVE me some eggs, so have decided to continue to devour them, but am curious as to the whole “don’t eat eggs” mentality – and it’s something I’ve never really looked into. I’m assuming it has to do with hormones and proteins, just like red meats and dairy, but will give it a looksy today.
An article was published on October 30, 2016 in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, which caught my interest. We know that Endometriosis can grow in a lot of places other than the reproductive organs and pelvis. This study found Endometriosis growing within a muscle: the psoas major muscle.
One of our local EndoSisters has recently been diagnosed with endometrial polyps, something I know absolutely nothing about. So what happens when I know nothing? I research!
What is a polyp?
A polyp is an abnormal overgrowth of tissue, usually a lump, bump, or stalky growth (hence the mushrooms above). They’re most commonly found in the colon, but can be found in the uterus (known as uterine or endometrial polyps), cervix, stomach, throat, nose, and ear canal. There can be just one polyp…or there can be lots.
I’d recently heard about food grade hydrogen peroxide. Wait, what? People are ingesting the bubbly stuff I put on scrapes and scratches? Some say it’s great for you, that it cures allll kinds of things by oxygenating the blood. Others swear up and down that it acts as a detox for your body (I know you’re either rolling your eyes at that word, or you’re squirming in your seat with excitement). Regardless of how I feel about detoxes, cleanses, cure-alls, etc., I am still curious about this trend.
What’s the differences between the hydrogen peroxide I keep in my medicine cabinet and “food grade hydrogen peroxide?” Concentration! Here’s the different types of H2O2 available:
Have you heard of pelvic floor dysfunction? I hadn’t; not before meeting women who suffer from it. And I’d never heard of a pelvic floor before that, either. We’re going to focus today on pelvic floor dysfunction in women (although men can get it). But what is it?
The pelvic floor is made up of a lot of little muscles, nerves, and tissues all working together for your body to function. Imagine it as a tightly-woven basket at the underside of your pelvis, sweeping from front to back, and side to side. Not only does it support the organs of the pelvis, but it also wraps around the urethra, rectum, and vagina. When these muscles, nerves, and tissues stop working properly (they are too tense or too lax), it’s called pelvic floor dysfunction. It can cause pain and difficulty with urination, defecation, intercourse, and lower back pain.