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Notes about endometriosis

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In late March 2012, I went to attend talks on endometriosis.

I made a note of A3 size. Here, I share some important things.

You may find them useful.

Of course the best thing to do is to consult doctor.

My note is useful to me so that I can quickly remember when I forget as time goes by.

What is endometriosis?

Endometriosis lesions can occur on organs throughout the pelvic area.

Endometriosis occurs in ~ 1 in 10 (some say up to 20-30%) women of child-bearing age; common in women in their 30s.

Endometriosis lesions cause chronic inflammation and pain;

it produces toxic substance;

attracts killer cells (that kill eggs and sperms).

Endometriosis depends on estrogen.

Endometriosis is associated with infertility.

Endometriosis is not cancer.

Why?

The causes are not fully understood yet.

Risk factors

1. higher risk if your mother / sister suffers from endometriosis.

Mom and Sis do not have any severe menstrual pain, only me.

2. prolonged / shorted cycle of the average 28 days.

What are symptoms of endometriosis?

  1. severe menstrual pain: that affects work and require medical leave.
  2. heavy periods
  3. premenstrual pain
  4. painful sex
  5. diffuse / chronic pelvic pain
  6. chronic fatigue
  7. heavy / irregular bleeding
  8. bowel-associated / bladder-associated symptoms during menstruation, e.g. bleeding from bowel
  9. constipation
  10. diarrhea
  11. colic (Severe, often fluctuating pain in the abdomen caused by intestinal gas or obstruction in the intestines and suffered esp. by babies)
  12. no symptoms (they only know after visiting a fertility specialist)

Note: The severity of endometriosis does not always correlate to the severity of symptoms.

What are possible treatments for endometriosis?

  1. only pregnancy can check mate endometriosis, but endometriosis reduces the chance of pregnancy. Only 1 winner.
  2. lifestyle change. exercise can decrease estrogen.
  3. drugs to control pain.
  4. drugs to control endometriosis growth.

Combined oral contraceptive pill, progesterone, GnRH analogues, Mirena coil.

Con:$, side effects, pregnancy put on hold.

  1. surgery (burn, ablate, remove).

5.a. endometriosis resection: for women who want to get pregnant .

5.b. hysterectomy.

5.1. traditional open surgery

5.2. laparoscopy (minimally invasive surgery) / telescope

www.daVinciSurgery.com

Note: every laparoscopy will burn eggs.

After surgery must immediately get pregnant (to prevent relapse).

I am going to see a gynecologist in early April 2012.

What to expect?

  1. ultrasound scan
  2. internal examination
  3. blood test (if suspect oncogenic cyst)
  4. PAP smear

Caveat: both ultrasound scan and internal examination may fail to detect endometriosis, particularly small cyst, scar, tiny powder deposit.

Please pray for me.

NOTES:

1. All surgery involves risk (of complications). Consider all possible treatment options before you decide on surgery. No surgery is safe. But the degree of safety depends on our doctors and the hospitals as well as our own body to recover.

2. Dr Ng Ying Woo said that irregular bleeding (after menstrual) may not be due to the endometriosis.

3. Menstrual cramps are not necessarily due to endometriosis.

Dr Stephen Chew said all the $ in the world cannot buy healthy eggs. The same goes for our health, they are very precious.

Someone once asked the Dalai Lama what surprises him most. This was his response:

"Man, because he sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

the result being that he does not live in the present or the future;

he lives as if he is never going to die,

and then he dies having never really lived."

4. As women grow older, our chance of getting pregnant decreases.

25 years old: 25%

35 years old: 15%

40 years old: 5%

What are possible fertility treatment?

1. IUI (put sperms into womb) : 8–10 % success rate.

2. IVF (test tube baby) to bypass the tube. 25-40% success rate.

I made a new friend with M, one of the most encouraging and courageous women I have encountered in life. I will never forget how she holds my hand.

She shared her experience in front of many people.

M suffered from endometriosis.

She had 2x surgeries.

After her first surgery, she did not take oral contraceptive pills (which are useful to prevent the relapse of endometriosis).

She was not aware of that, and since she is a Catholic, like me, by religion we are not supposed to take contraceptive pills (which she thought to prevent procreation).

I think rules need flexibility, if taking contraceptive pills is to allow recovery so that a woman has higher chance to conceive, then it is actually promoting procreation.

After her 2nd surgery, she took the contraceptive pills to prevent the relapse of endometriosis for 2 years.

Then, she stopped taking contraceptive pills after no sign of endometriosis.

She used ovulation kit to assist pregnancy and succeed after 1 year of trying.

She got her first child after 10 years of marriage, but she NEVER GIVE UP!

Now, she is a happy Mom and wishes for the 2nd child.

I am praying for you, M.

PS: M told me that Dr Fong Yoke Fai succeeded in treating her. Before that, she was seeing another gynecologist who was unhelpful and wasted her 5 years of life.

Pondering on estrogen:

Estrogen seems to me like a double edge sword.

Estrogen makes women beautiful (rosy cheek).

Estrogen promotes endometriosis.

The good news is even if one has low estrogen, make-up (lipstick, blushers) can help.

More info:

http://www.marieclaire.com/health-fitness/advice/female-hormones-cycle

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Written by blueroselady

April 1, 2012 at 2:22 am

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