Endometriosis is a medical condition affecting about five million women. It occurs when the lining of the uterus, known as endometrium, moves out of the uterus and into other parts of the pelvic area such as the ovaries, bowels or behind the uterus.
Endometriosis is a common health problem. It is generally not a serious or harmful condition, but can be painful and may interfere with your daily life.
During your period, this endometrial tissue swells and bleeds and sheds from the lining to be released in the menstrual flow. When the tissue is in other areas, this swelling causes pain and may form scar tissue. There is no known cause of this condition, but it has a tendency to run in families.
Symptoms of endometriosis include:
- Painful menstrual cramps
- Chronic lower back and pelvic pain
- Pain during or after sex
- Heavy and/or long menstrual periods
Endometriosis can be diagnosed through an ultrasound or MRI. There is no cure for the disease, but symptoms can be treated depending on their type and severity. Talk to your doctor today if you think you may be experiencing endometriosis.
As you age, your body slowly ceases to produce estrogen and progesterone, two hormones that thicken the uterus to prepare it for the implantation of a fertilized egg. These hormones also protect the body from developing uterine cancer and osteoporosis. The decrease of these hormone levels is also responsible for many of the symptoms of menopause.
As these hormones are valuable to women's health, many women choose to replace them synthetically through a pill, patch or cream to retain the benefits produced through hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Estrogen, by itself, helps relieve menopause symptoms and prevent osteoporosis. When combined with progesterone, the therapy allows for the uterine lining shedding each month without the regular bleeding. While there are risks associated with HRT, it is important to take the lowest dosage possible re-evaluating your therapy annually. Your doctor can help you decide which type of HRT, if any, is right for you.
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is a virus that causes genital warts. There are more than 100 different kinds of viruses and some of them may increase the risk for cancer. While some types can cause genital warts, others will show no symptoms but can eventually lead to cancers of the cervix, vulva, vagina and anus. Contracted through sexual contact, the risk of infection can be reduced by using latex condoms.
Medical and surgical treatment, as well as vaccinations, can be provided.