What are the possible symptoms of endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a disease, the symptoms of which can vary widely from patient to patient. For this reason, it is also known as the “chameleon” of the gynaecological disorders. Misdiagnosis is common due to the non-specific nature of the symptoms. This can place a great strain on the affected woman, not least due to being labelled as “psychologically instable or having a psychological overlay”.
It is common that the symptomes are not directly related to the severity of the disease. This means that small findings can cause severe pain. However, there are also endometriotic lesions that do not tend to grow and have no clinical significance.
The cardinal symptoms of the disease are as follows
- Unwanted infertility
- Bleeding problems
- “Non-characteristic symptoms”
- Menstrual pain that can cause malaise, increased use of medication and the inability to work is typical.
- Pain during the period (dysmenorrhoea)
- Sudden fainting attacks associated with menstrual pains
- Chronic lower abdominal pain
- Abdominal pain, back pain and lumbago, in some cases radiating into the legs, before and during menstruation.
- Pain during and after sexual intercourse (dyspareunia)
- Pain, bleeding and cramps during defecation/urination (dyschezia/dysuria)
- Pain during ovulation
- Unwanted infertility is an increasingly common symptom as the disease progresses. Approximately 30 – 40 % of women with endometriosis are affected by this problem.
3. Problems with bleeding
- Severe and/or irregular monthly bleeding.
4. “Non-characteristic symptoms”
- Fatigue and exhaustion
- Increased susceptibility to infections
- Back pain
- Diarrhoea and/or constipation and other bowel problems
- Increased incidence of allergies and other autoimmune disorders
If you have this combination of symptoms or similar, talk to your doctor about endometriosis. Do not be afraid to get a second opinion.