Dr.Kiran Lakhani is (Certified Enzymatic Dietitian And Nutritionist) qualified in (BHMS, PGDHM) gives an in-depth understanding of Endometriosis. Its causes, complications & treatments.
In our ongoing journey of, ‘HEALTHY WOMAN, HEALTHY SOCIETY’, in last week episode, we have seen all about painful periods. And one of the causes of the painful period is ENDOMETRIOSIS.
Dear women, I know you all are not aware of the term Endometriosis, but it is important to know about it as it can happen in any age group—and leads to infertility in the later part of life. And the very important thing is, the modern medical science doesn’t have permanent treatment (except removal of uterus and ovaries).
So first of all what is Endometriosis? Why does it occur? What are the ill effects of Endometriosis? We have to understand all about Endometriosis, first of all, we need to understand how and why menstrual bleeding occurs.
Throughout the month various hormones get changed in the body. Actually, the brain (the Hypothalamus and the Pituitary gland—inside the brain), the ovaries, and the uterus work together and communicate through hormones to keep the cycles going on.
Here Menses/periods happens because the innermost lining of the uterus becomes thick under the influences of hormone Estrogen and Progesterone. This inner lining is called Endometrium. So every month Endometrium becomes thick and prepares a bed for fertilization (means preparation for pregnancy). But when ovum and sperm do not get fertilized, then this thick inner lined Endometrium sheds and it comes out in form of bleeding. This is all about menstrual bleeding.
When this Endometrium is present outside the uterus, i.e. Ectopic Endometrium—it is called Endometriosis. When outside it means anywhere on the ovary, on the Fallopian tube, on the wall of the uterus, on the ureter (pipe carrying urine from the kidney to the bladder), on bowel or on the intestine, or lying on the abdominal wall.
So wherever, these endometrial tissues are there, it starts bleeding end of every month because of hormonal changes. When endometrial bleeding occurs inside the uterus it has a natural path to come out. But when bleeding occurs from Ectopic Endometrium it doesn’t come outside the body as it doesn’t have a natural path like a vagina. So this Ectopic Endometrium grows inside and forms a structure like a ball or a cyst. This overgrowth ball or cyst contains dirty fluid or collected or clotted blood. It becomes painful. So inside the abdomen, it forms a cyst that is called CHOCOLATE CYST or Adhesion.
In severe cases because of recurring bleeding, all things stuck together, and more Adhesion, so it may mimics like cancer, but it is not actually cancer or not that much fatal like cancer.
Who are at risk?
- Sometimes it may be from starting of first periods.
- But moreover common in between the age group of 30 to 40 years of age.
- Common in females who have late marriage or late childbirth planning.
- It is because of Estrogen hormone imbalance, so ladies who are more stressed may have more chances of hormone imbalance.
Causes of Endometriosis:
- In the medical world, there is so many diseases where no known cause is there for any disease, it is called Idiopathic cause. Endometriosis has one cause is Idiopathic.
- Retrograde menstruation: in this menstrual blood containing endometrial cells flows back through the fallopian tubes and into the pelvic cavity instead of coming out from the vagina. These Endometrial cells stick to pelvic organs like ovary, fallopian tube, ureter, intestine etc. Here it grows and continues to thicken and bleed over the course of each menstrual cycle.
- Surgical scar implantation: After a surgery, such as a hysterectomy or caesarian section endometrial cells may attach to a surgical incision.
- Immune system disorder: A problem with the immune system may make the body unable to recognize and destroy endometrial tissue that’s growing outside the uterus.
- Hereditary: One or more relatives (mother, aunt or sister) with endometriosis.
Symptoms of Endometriosis:
- Very painful periods. (But there are other causes also for painful periods.)
- Heavy bleeding.
- Scarring or Adhesion inside the abdomen.
- Pain during urination. (If Ectopic Endometrial tissue present on ureter).
- Pain while passing stool. (If Ectopic Endometrial tissue present on bowel or large intestine).
- Pain during intercourse.
- Infertility. (Female not able to give birth to a child. At most important complication of Endometriosis also.)
- Mostly basic idea comes with the history given by a lady or girl. Severe cramp, pulling like pain inside the abdomen starts before 3-4 days before menses, during and after also.
- Gynaecologist locally examines can felt if the cyst is inside and local examination is very painful than routine course.
- Ultrasound is useful only when there is a chocolate cyst on the ovary.
- MRI is helpful in diagnosis when there is Adhesion. Soft tissue adhesion can be seen in MRI only.
- Laparoscopy is a more reliable and standard investigation of Endometriosis.
- Infertility: Very important cause of infertility is Endometriosis. Sometimes in young age Endometriosis is undiagnosed, if pain is not severe. And when one come for treatment of infertility then it is diagnosed.
- Frozen pelvis: in severe case because of recurrent bleeding all organs like ovary, fallopian tube, ureter, bowel or intestine stuck together.
Treatment of Endometriosis:
General measures and Diet:
- For severe pain can get relief with hot fomentation with hot water bag or with heating pads.
- Light exercise and yoga can definitely help you in keeping hormone balance and it decreases pain also.
- Diet plays very major role in keeping hormone balance. So avoid too much spicy and fatty foods. Also avoid meat and chicken.
- Consume more vegetables, whole grains, cereals and all food rich in high fibers.
- Daily take omega-3 fatty acids. Diet rich in omega in Omega-3 fatty acids are Flax seeds, Chia seeds, Walnut etc. And all vegetable oils like canola oil, Flaxseeds oil etc.
- Soybeans is also very useful.
- One should avoid dairy products and milk, as hormones of cow and buffaloes through their milk causes hormonal imbalance.
- To reduce the pain can take painkillers.
- Oral contraceptive pills (21 days pills).
- GnRH injections works on brain to ovary. It temporary stops hormone production, so it stops menstrual cycle temporarily 1 to 3 months. It is used in severe cases only when no effect of other treatment.
- Laparoscopy: Laparoscopy is a tool use for diagnosis and treatment purpose both.With the help of Laproscope a doctor can know where the extra endometrium is there in pelvic cavity, can as far as possible try to remove it. But again it is temporary effect, again in next cycle Endometrium sheds and cause pain and blood clots.
- In severe cases where no treatment works, more adhesions are inside, and woman doesn’t need to conceive, in these situations Gynecologist advise to remove whole uterus and ovary.(‘Na rahe ga bas, na bajegi basuri’).
- So in all Allopathic mode of treatment, they try to stop hormone production either temporary or permanently.
Here, I would like to ask my dear ladies– hormones, female organs all of which are God gifted, why should remove? Why should not try to save with another mode of treatment?
- There are some homeopathic medicines that save your uterus and ovary, can prevent excessive blood loss, can restore your health which is deteriorated by more bleeding and from the outside hormonal intake.
- Medicines like Fraxenus Americans, Thalapsi bursa pastoris, Secale cor., Trillium p., Sabina, Sepia, etc.
- Constitutional homeopathic medicine works on the whole aspect of your body and brings back hormones into normal equilibrium.
*Take all medicines under guidance of a doctor.
Dear readers, though you all are not familiar with this female complaint, but it is terrible pain and complicating in later life, so share it with your friends and relatives, so we can save someone’s God gifted reproductive organ—uterus and ovary.
(Certified Enzymatic Dietitian And Nutritionist)
Contact no: 6352116631