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Endometriosis

Aug 4, 2008
To fully understand endometriosis, one has to first know that endometrial membranes (tissues) make up the uterus lining therefore the endometrial membranes can ONLY be found in the uterus. Endometriosis is a medical condition whereby the endometrial membranes are found elsewhere other than the uterus. Most cases of endometriosis are found in parts of the areas of the female pelvis such as the ovary, broad ligaments below the ovary and pouch of Douglas. In some worse cases, these membranes that are supposed to be found only in the uterus are grown in ridiculous areas such as the bladder, kidney, lung and even brain!

The endometrial membranes are meant to break down during the menstrual cycle, and of course women during this time of the month may experience cramps and pain in the uterus or abdominal area. Imagine that! What happens during the breaking down of these tissues in the menstrual cycle means not only having cramps in the uterus but also in the areas where the endometrial membranes are present - lungs and brains alike (Ouch!).

Moving on, let's look at the symptoms of endometriosis. Aside from the immense pain, the condition gets worse over time which is known to be progressive pain. Patients may also experience chronic pelvic pain in the areas of lower back, painful bowel movements, frequent and sometimes painful voiding (urinating). Serious cases could lead to infertility and fatigue driven depression.

Causes of Endometriosis:

The exact causes of endometriosis cannot be confirmed, yet. However there are many speculations derived from theories that could explain the possible cause.

The most comprehensible cause of endometriosis is an excess in the estrogen hormone in the human (female) body. This approach of explanation is derived from the fact that endometriosis occurs mostly among women who have yet to become pregnant. The method of controlling this condition based on the presumed cause is to lower estrogen levels, thus reducing the growth of endometrial tissues altogether.

The second explanation for the occurrences of endometriosis is such: During menstruation, the lining of the uterus (uterus wall) is shed and expected to flow out of the body via the vagina. However, little amounts of the menstrual fluid may flow to areas such as the fallopian tubes, and even into areas within the pelvic cavity. The endometrial tissues that were brought along with the fluid might land wherever and start/continue growing thus causing endometriosis. This endometriosis is deemed to be caused by retrograde menstruation (reverse menstruation where the menstrual fluids flow back into other parts of the body instead of out).

Some theory also suggests that heredity plays a role in determining the risks of endometriosis as mothers, daughters and sisters of endometriosis patients have a higher likelihood of experiencing the same medical condition. This is also partly derived from the first theory because endometriosis by high estrogen hormone levels means that there are hormone imbalances in the human body and hormone imbalances are genetically connected.

Suggested Treatment by Theory:

As of now, only temporary solutions aimed at maintaining a healthy and balanced hormone level are suggested such as birth control pills that treats the progression of endometriosis only.
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