Endometriosis is a common condition that’s often associated with fertility, but did you know that many women wait over seven years to get a proper diagnosis?
Here’s five things you need to know about endometriosis, fertility and having a family:
What endometriosis is
Endometriosis is where the cells that are usually found in the womb also grow in the pelvic area. These cells hormonally react just as uterus cells do throughout the monthly cycle, growing, breaking down and bleeding.
It’s diagnosed through a procedure called a laparoscopy, where a tiny camera is used through the abdomen.
The severity of endometriosis varies from woman to woman, and it’s estimated over 1.5 million women have the chronic condition.
Why endometriosis affects fertility
Because endometriosis causes inflammation and the build-up of scar tissue, it can prevent your fallopian tubes and ovaries from working properly, making it difficult to conceive.
Endometriosis can’t be completely cured, but surgery can be performed to remove affected tissue.
Getting pregnant with endometriosis
Having endometriosis doesn’t mean you can’t have a baby. Some women can still conceive naturally even though they have endometriosis, whilst others need fertility treatment. It all depends on where your endometriosis is occurring and how extensive it is.
It’s essential to get expert fertility advice if you have the condition and are planning a family, so the best way forward can be found for you to have a baby.
Fertility treatment for endometriosis
An individualised approach is vital when advising fertility treatment, because endometriosis doesn’t affect any two women in the same way.
At Manchester Fertility we help many women with endometriosis to successfully have a family, through tailored fertility treatments designed to overcome the specific problems their endometriosis has caused.
Before any treatment is advised we’ll perform a thorough fertility assessment, so we can get the most up to date, clear picture of how exactly the condition is currently impacting your ability to conceive.
If your endometriosis is severe and the condition has damaged your ovaries, affecting ovarian reserve and egg quality, donor eggs may offer you the best chance to have a baby. If you do need donor eggs, we have UK donor eggs immediately available so there’s no worry about any treatment delay.
Whatever the best course of action, we’ll explain your treatment clearly and simply, so you understand our approach, what we’re going to do and why.
We’ll also provide you with a fully costed, transparently priced treatment plan. If you’re interested in funding treatment via a pre-paid discounted plan, we’ll explain your available options.
Symptoms of endometriosis – getting help
Endometriosis can be a difficult condition to diagnose because of its varied range of symptoms. Many women have painful periods but it could be a sign of endometriosis if pain is severe and affecting your everyday life.
Other symptoms can include:
- Long, heavy and irregular periods
- Difficulty conceiving if you’re trying for a baby
- Pelvic pain
- Painful bowel movements/passing urine
- Pain during or after intercourse
If you can identify with these symptoms, see your GP for further tests. It’s important to get help sooner rather than later as if you do have the condition and do need fertility treatment, your age is one of the things that can affect chances of success. Support is also available from Endometriosis UK.
Endometriosis expertise: Manchester Fertility
Our consultant Dr Kingshuk Majumder specialises in treating endometriosis. He’s a laparoscopic surgeon and part of the team at the Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis Centre at St Mary’s Hospital, one of the largest endometriosis referral centres in the UK.
If you’d like a consultation there’s no waiting list. Speak to our friendly New Patient Coordinators on 0845 268 2244, self-refer online or book in for a FREE private 1-2-1 – it’s a non-medical first step to fertility treatment where you can explore treatment options and learn more about us.
Last updated: 10th January 2020