Endometriosis can cause pain and infertility in one out of every 10 women of reproductive age. If you have symptoms that suggest endometriosis or received a diagnosis, Anne O. Rodriguez, MD, of Gynecologic Oncology Specialists, removes endometriosis in a minimally invasive manner, so you find relief from painful and disruptive symptoms. Women in Lompoc, Ventura, and Santa Barbara, California, can book a one-on-one consultation via phone or online.
When tissue similar to the layer of cells that lines your uterus grows outside of your womb, it’s diagnosed as endometriosis. The tissue can appear on the outside of your uterus, on surrounding reproductive organs, and even on the rectum or vagina. In very rare cases, the tissue may appear on the diaphragm and in the lungs.
The abnormally placed uterine tissue has the same characteristics as the endometrium inside your uterus. It sheds and bleeds monthly with your cycle. But, the tissue and blood have no easy exit, causing painful inflammation. Endometriosis can start as early as a woman’s very first period.
Why some women develop endometriosis isn’t clear. It likely has a genetic aspect, so if your mother or other women in your family have the condition, you’re at greater risk of developing it, too.
Endometriosis doesn’t always cause symptoms. Many women, however, experience moderate or severe pelvic pain that often grows worse during their period. Other symptoms include:
If you notice these symptoms and they interfere with your quality of life, Dr. Rodriguez at Gynecologic Oncology Specialists can help. She may recommend you undergo a diagnostic laparoscopy – the only verifiable way to determine if you have endometriosis.
When medications and hormones can’t manage your endometriosis symptoms, surgery is an option. Dr. Rodriguez uses minimally invasive robotic surgery with the da Vinci® system to precisely remove the misplaced uterine tissue and preserve the structure of your organs. This is especially important if you desire to get pregnant in the future. Many women with endometriosis do go on to have a successful pregnancy.
There’s no cure for endometriosis; even after tissue removal, it can recur. Most women do find relief of their symptoms with conservative surgery, but some require a hysterectomy as the only way to fully treat endometriosis.
If you have endometriosis, contact Gynecologic Oncology Specialists to learn about your treatment options. Call or book an appointment online.