Three Signs you Might Have Endometriosis
By Dr. Kate Dudek
Endometriosis is a condition in which the endometrial tissue that normally forms the lining of the womb grows elsewhere in the body. Prevalence is hard to estimate, particularly as up to 25% of women with endometriosis are asymptomatic; however, it is thought that up to 10% of women will be affected by endometriosis at some point in their lifetime.
Symptoms of endometriosis are variable between patients and diagnosis is challenging; the only universally recognised approach is to undergo laparoscopic surgery.
However, there are three signs (the 3 Ps) that might indicate a possible endometriosis diagnosis and if you are experiencing any of the three, it is worth seeking further medical advice:
1) Painful periods (dysmenorrhoea)
2) Pelvic pain between periods
3) Pain during sex (dyspareunia).
Between 60 and 80% of women with endometriosis experience dysmenorrhoea, 40-50% report chronic pelvic pain and 40-50% have dyspareunia. Thus, pain is certainly a well-recognised symptom of the condition. However, with such a clinically diverse presentation, it is worth remembering that pain is not the only symptom of endometriosis.
Furthermore, these three symptoms cannot be solely attributed to endometriosis. There are a number of physiological conditions that can cause symptoms such as these, so a thorough medical consultation is recommended.
- Bulletti, C, et al. “Endometriosis and Infertility.” Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics, vol. 27, no. 8, 25 June 2010, pp. 441–447., doi: 10.1007/s10815-010-9436-1.
- “What Are the Most Common Endometriosis Symptoms?” SPEAKENDO.com, Abbvie, www.speakendo.com/about-endometriosis/symptoms.