Symptoms of endometriosis vary from woman to another. Some women have no symptoms at all whereas others may have severe pain.
Painful periods (Dysmenorrhoea): It is the primary symptom of endometriosis often associated with menstrual period. In the initial stage of the disease pelvic pain may be perceived as ‘normal’ bodily changes that take place with the menstrual cycle. As the intensity of pain increases the woman begins to suspect that her pain is not normal. Although many women experience pain and cramping during their menstrual period, pain in women with endometriosis is far worse than usual. It may increase in intensity with time. The pain and cramping may begin before and extend several days into your period. Many women may experience lower back and abdominal pain.
Pain with intercourse (Dyspareunia): Pain during or after sex is a common symptom of endometriosis. Pain may be felt during intercourse and may last for up to 48 hours after sexual activity.
Pain with bowel movements or urination: A woman may experience these symptoms during her period. The bowel and bladder symptoms of endometriosis are usually the result of endometriosis lying on the outside of the bladder or bowel, or irritation from endometrial implants lying on the uterus. Other urinary symptoms of endometriosis include blood in urine, painful or burning urination, tenderness around the kidneys, pain in the flank radiating toward the groin and urinary frequency, retention, or urgency.
Excessive menstrual bleeding: Many women experience occasional heavy periods (menorrhagia) or bleeding between periods (menometrorrhagia).
Infertility: Endometriosis has been observed to be one of the reasons for infertility for otherwise healthy couples. Laparoscopic examination done during infertility evaluation may show endometrial implants. Some of these women may not have painful symptoms of endometriosis. The exact reason for decrease in fertility is not completely understood, but it may be caused because of both anatomic and hormonal factors.
Other symptoms: Many women may also experience fatigue, diarrhoea, constipation, bloating or nausea, during menstrual periods.
The severity of pain and other symptoms are not necessarily a consistent indicator of the extent of the condition. A woman with mild endometriosis may experience severe pain, while others with extensive endometriosis may have minimal symptoms and little pain.
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