Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Endometriosis Awareness Day 22

     A growing number of younger women are also being diagnosed annually, with studies indicating that as many as 70% of teenagers with chronic pelvic pain ultimately have Endometriosis proven by surgery.  Studies have also shown that Endometriosis may have an even bigger impact on younger patients: in those under 22 years of age, the rate of recurrence was double that of older women (35% versus 19%). 

     If studies are showing that Endometriosis is having a bigger impact on younger patients why aren't pediatricians being made aware of it? My younger sister (16 years old) has many signs of Endometriosis. When I took her in to the doctor to talk to her about the problems she was having I was told that Endometriosis is not a common disease (we went in there told her the problems and I said I was worried bc I have Endo.. I didn't go in there saying or suggesting my sister has Endo), it is not something teenagers have, and if she had it there was no way to treat it. She said that severe cramps are normal in children from 14-18 and that it would get better when she got older. I tried explaining to her that it is a VERY common disease just highly undiagnosed and that there are ways to help treat it. I hope the doctor was right and this is just what some kids go through at this age and it's nothing more but I'd like to remind everyone that if you have the symptoms to please talk to your doctor about it. 

Common signs and symptoms of endometriosis may include:
  • Painful periods (dysmenorrhea). Pelvic pain and cramping may begin before and extend several days into your period and may include lower back and abdominal pain.
  • Pain with intercourse. Pain during or after sex is common with endometriosis.
  • Pain with bowel movements or urination. You're most likely to experience these symptoms during your period.
  • Excessive bleeding. You may experience occasional heavy periods (menorrhagia) or bleeding between periods (menometrorrhagia).
  • Infertility. Endometriosis is first diagnosed in some women who are seeking treatment for infertility.
  • Other symptoms. You may also experience fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, bloating or nausea, especially during menstrual periods.
  • http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/endometriosis/DS00289/DSECTION=symptoms
 If you feel your doctor isn't educated in this field (and it IS okay to ask that question) then call around and see if any local OBGYN's are well aware of the disease. Remember it's your health, your body. No one can help you but yourself!

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