Approximately 176 million women worldwide have endometriosis, some of which may at some point dismiss their symptoms as part of their period.
We recently spoke with one of our expert obstetricians and gynaecologists, Mr Mahantesh Karoshi, to try and pinpoint exactly where endometriosis is felt so that you can identify when you may need a specialist to check for this condition.
How bad is the pain from endometriosis and where does it occur?
Endometriosis pain can vary from day to day (even hour to hour!), and it’s different for every woman. Some feel pain constantly, whereas others might only be in pain around the time of their period. The location of endometrial lesions can affect symptoms. When women talk to their doctors, they usually describe the pain with words like “sharp” or “dull,” or by using a pain scale from 1 to 10.
Some women never feel like they can fully convey how endometriosis pain actually feels. Some women are often left with the sense that it’s not as bad as they are making it out to be, especially since the pain is invisible. I often see women asking what endometriosis feels like because they think they might have it.
There are many similarities between endometriosis and the pain that a woman would feel during her period which I think is why endometriosis is commonly mistaken for a “bad period”.
Where are endometrial lesions usually found?Endometrial lesions are most commonly found in the pelvic area on organs such as:
- Fallopian tubes
- Rectovaginal septum
- Since lesions can grow in a variety of locations in the body, this may explain why one woman may feel pain on the left side of her pelvis, while another may feel it in her abdomen—the pain often occurs where the lesions are located.
Some lesions can even form their own nerves—another reason there can be pelvic pain outside of the period.
Over times, lesions can form scar tissue or adhesions between organs—meaning they stick together—which can cause even more pain.
What are some of the specific symptoms?
The specific symptoms a woman with endometriosis experiences may be a result of where her endometriosis is located.
Symptoms that indicate the endometriosis involves bladder are:
- Urine that contains blood
- Pain above the pubic bone during urination
- Frequent and urgent need to urinate
If endometriosis involves the large bowel, then, symptoms may include:
- Abdominal bloating
- Pain during bowel movements
- Rectal bleeding during menstruation
Can lesions be found in other areas that aren’t the pelvic area?
Rarely, lesions can be found in areas further away from the pelvic area.
If you believe you may have endometriosis or need to treat it, we recommend getting in contact with a leading consultant gynaecologist such as Mr Mahantesh Karoshi . Click here to visit his Top Doctors profile today for information on appointment availability.