Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Blood in a test tube

Endometriosis can be diagnosed by blood tests, imaging studies, or pelvic examinations.

TallTale

There are many ways a physician may begin to suspect that a woman has Endometriosis.  A review of her pain, symptoms, and medical history; a pelvic examination; ultrasounds or MRIs; and blood tests.  But can these tests actually confirm a diagnosis of Endometriosis?

No.

The only “golden standard,” tried-and-true method of confirming the presence of Endometriosis is surgically opening a woman’s abdomen, peeking inside, and seeing the presence of the implants, lesions, and/or adhesions.  A study published on July 13, 2016 concludes, again, that surgery is the “golden standard” method of diagnosing Endometriosis.  It further states that these non-invasive tools should only be used in a research setting…

Presently, there are ongoing studies and research to develop non-invasive ways of being able to confirm Endometriosis; however, those end results are long off.

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

1 in 10 women suffer from Endometriosis

Theory

Just how many women suffer from Endometriosis?  And what are the figures if they included transgender, non-binary and the (very rare) instances of men with Endometriosis? And how do we know those stats?  Depending on what source you’re looking at, the number is between 2% – 15% of women suffer from Endometriosis.  Some say 1 in 10 women, other sources say 5-10%, and others say 10-15% of women.  The National Institute of Health once said, “Because some women might have Endometriosis, but do not have symptoms, it is difficult to know exactly how many women have the condition.” For now, 1 in 10 seems to be the best number anyone can estimate.

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

pregnancy test showing positive

Getting pregnant and having a child will cure your Endometriosis growth and pain.

TallTale

Many women are told that if they wish to end their pain and suffering, to get pregnant and have a baby.  This is sort of a Catch 22 : a lot of women with Endometriosis experience infertility problems, yet are told getting pregnant will alleviate their pain and symptoms.

While many women experience relief during their pregnancies, the pain and symptoms of Endometriosis may return after the delivery.  This may be due, in part, to the fact that the women are no longer menstruating.  Their cramps have subsided.  Their hormones have altered.  But it’s temporary.  Many women report a full return of their pain and symptoms once their child is born.  Some women, however, claim to be pain-free after childbirth.

Resources:

American Pregnancy Association

Baby Center

Baby Centre

Endometriosis.org

~ Again, I am a layman.  I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge.  Please take what I say with a grain of salt.  If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings.  Or challenge them.  And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always.  Yours ~ Lisa

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Taffy puller machine

Endometriosis can weave together your organs.

Truth

Endometriosis may cause internal scarring, called adhesions.  These adhesions may form webs within the body, intertwining and connecting, sometimes causing organs to be “stuck” to one another.  Most often, the bowel and uterus are fused to each other, as are the bladder and the uterus.  Adhesions may also obstruct Fallopian tubes or the bowel, leading to some potential life-threatening issues.  Many women who undergo excision surgery to remove their Endometriosis also have their adhesions separated, cut, and removed.  Unfortunately, though, the simply act of surgery or removing adhesions may lead to more adhesions forming during the healing process.

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Bloomin' Uterus logo surrounded by question marks

Following the “Endo Diet” will relieve your pain and other Endometriosis symptoms.

Theory

The Endo Diet works for many people to alleviate some of their pain and other Endometriosis symptoms; however, it does not work for all.

What is the Endo Diet?

In a nutshell, you try to reduce or completely exclude the following items from your diet:

  • Wheat
  • Red meat and ham
  • Refined sugars (including juices and sodas)
  • Caffeine
  • Chocolate
  • Dairy
  • Alcohol
  • Some women cut out eggs (I still eat them)

I try my hardest to follow this diet and have been pain free since July, 2014.  BUT…I had my diagnostic and excision surgery on June 30, 2014; altered my diet in July, 2014; began my Lupon Depot injections in August, 2014; ended my Lupron Depot injections in January, 2015; and have been on continuous birth control since January, 2015.  I also drink a nightly anti-inflammatory tea before bed.  I truly believe that I am pain free because of the combination of these treatments and dietary changes.

I’d love to hear if you follow the Endo Diet and how your pain and symptoms have been since starting it.  Drop me a comment below?

~ Again, I am a layman.  I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge.  Please take what I say with a grain of salt.  If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings.  Or challenge them.  And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always.  Yours ~ Lisa

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Bloomin' Uterus logo surrounded by question marks

Endometriosis is not restricted to your pelvic cavity.

Truth

Endometriosis can infect your pelvic cavity and is routinely found on the ovaries, the bladder, the bowel, the uterus, the fallopian tubes, etc.  It is also found on other organs, such as the liver.  It can grow and spread on the diaphragm and lungs, and even enter a woman’s lungs, causing regular collapsed lungs or coughing up blood.  Rare cases of Endometriosis have been diagnosed on the brain, heart, eyes, skin, and even inside the spinal cord.

This disease is not restricted to the gynecological interest.  It should not be known as just a “period disease.”  All areas of the body can be affected.  Ongoing research to better understand this incredibly invasive disease.  One day we will have answers.  And hopefully a cure.

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Bloomin' Uterus logo surrounded by question marks

Endometriosis begins to develop while you’re still in the womb.

Theory

Although a few recent studies have found displaced endometrioum-like cells outside of the uterine cavity of female fetuses, there is still a lot of research to be done.  Several people now believe that those of us who have Endometriosis have had it since we were in our mothers’ wombs.  Some believe it’s pre-ordained at birth where our Endometriosis implants will grow and at what Stage (1, 2, 3, or 4).

Unfortunately, there is still no proven cause of Endometriosis, so every “cause” is still just a theory.  Without a known cause, a cure is difficult to even begin to develop.

Resources:

Endopaedia

Reproductive Biomedicine Online

U.S. National Library of Medicine

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Bloomin' Uterus logo surrounded by question marks

There is no cure for Endometriosis.

Truth

Even in this age of modern science and medicine, there is no cure.  The only “Golden Standard” medical treatment of Endometriosis is the surgical excision of the implants and adhesions that grow and fester inside of our bodies.  There are suppressant treatments of hormones and other drugs.  And there are a lot of dietary, supplemental, and Eastern Medicine choices out there to help ease the symptoms.  But for many women surgery, hormones, supplements, Western Medicine, and Eastern Medicine have all failed to ease their pain and suffering.  Many women claim they’ve cured their Endometriosis through diet, supplement, and metaphysical means.

Scientifically and medicinally: no, there is no cure.

There are plenty of ongoing research studies out there, though.  So perhaps in our lifetime there will be a cure.  In the meantime, continue to fight to raise awareness, raise funds, and fight.

Yours, Lisa

~ Again, I am a layman.  I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge.  Please take what I say with a grain of salt.  If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings.  Or challenge them.  And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always.  Yours ~ Lisa

Truth, Theory, or Tall Tale?

Bloomin' Uterus logo surrounded by question marks

You’ll stop having Endometriosis symptoms, pain, adhesions, and surgeries once you hit menopause.

TallTale

There have been many documented cases of women still having Endometriosis symptoms and pain even after entering menopause.  There has even been a 78-year-old woman who had to undergo excision surgery! 78!  And this woman had a hysterectomy in her 50s.  Further providing evidence that a hysterectomy will not cure your Endometriosis (although it may take away some of those monthly uterus pains).

Women who have Endometriosis and are peri-menopausal, menopausal, or post-menopausal (whether naturally or surgically-induced) will need to talk to their doctors about any hormone replacement therapy (HRT).  Some believe that the supplemental introduction of estrogen may increase your chances of recurrent Endometriosis, especially if some Endo implants remain in your body.  Some women also continue to suffer from the digestive and bowel-related issues.  It is also important to note that your ovaries are not the only estrogen-manufacturers in your body.  Your liver, for instance, manufacturers estrogen.  I repeat: talk to your doctor.  Especially if you fear your Endometriosis has returned.

Keep heart, though.  Many women report a huge decline in their Endometriosis-related symptoms once they hit menopause.  However, as you know: Endometriosis is different for every woman. Only time will tell.

Resources:

Endometriosis Association

U.S. National Library of Medicine

WomensHealth.gov

Women’s Voices for Change

~ Again, I am a layman.  I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge.  Please take what I say with a grain of salt.  If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings.  Or challenge them.  And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always.  Yours ~ Lisa