Facts about endometriosis

Demystifying some myths and misconceptions about endometriosis.

A lack of awareness of what endometriosis is, combined with a general belief that many of the symptoms are "normal", often results in a great delay between when a woman first experiences symptoms and when she is diagnosed and begins treatment.

To counter these myths, here are 5 facts about endometriosis:

1. Severe period pain is not normal

Pain that interferes with daily life (going to school/work, taking part in day today activities) is not normal. You should seek help from your doctor and ask what is causing your pain.

2. Teens aren't too young to have endometriosis

Teenagers and young women in their early 20s are not too young to have endometriosis. In fact, most women experience symptoms during adolescence but, unfortunately, don’t get diagnosed and treated until they are in their 20s or 30s.

3. Hormonal treatments do not cure endometriosis

Hormonal treatments, such as the combined oral contraceptive pill, medroxyprogesterone acetate or norethisterone, temporarily ease symptoms of endometriosis, but only while the medications are being taken. Once you stop taking the medications, symptoms can often return.

4. Endometriosis does not equal infertility

Many young women are given the impression that having endometriosis will mean they will be infertile (unable to conceive a baby). Many women with endometriosis do go on to have children.

5. Pregnancy does not cure endometriosis

Pregnancy, like hormonal drug treatments, may temporarily stop the symptoms of endometriosis, but does not cure it: symptoms usually recur after the birth of a child.

Read more about endometrosis.

Credits: Health Navigator Editorial Team.