March is Endometriosis Awareness Month. Endometriosis can cause painful periods, which have been normalized in today’s society, according to Dr. Mallory Stuparich, a minimally invasive gynecologic surgeon at UCR Health Inland Empire Women’s Health Center. Dr. Stuparich has had many patients tell her they experience painful periods but aren’t sure what may be causing such pain and what makes it so hard to carry out everyday tasks like going to work, going to school, or taking care of their children.
What is Endometriosis? How Common is it?
Endometriosis is a condition in which the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus. The exact cause of endometriosis is unknown. According to Dr. Stuparich, this disease affects anywhere between 6% – 10% of patients.
What are Some Symptoms of Endometriosis?
Endometriosis can cause painful periods, pain with sex, bladder pain, and pain with bowel movements. Patients may also have a hard time conceiving a pregnancy (infertility).
What are My Treatment Options?
Treatment is highly individualized and depends on the patient’s goals of care and individual medical history. Non-opioid pain medications and hormone therapy may help control symptoms but do not eliminate the disease. Minimally invasive surgery to remove/excise endometriosis (sometimes called “excision surgery”) is the only treatment option that can diagnose the disease and physically remove it from the body. Patients can be sent home on the same day, though this can vary between patients and how advanced the disease is. It is best to speak to a physician with expertise in treating this complex condition about the best individual plan for you.
If you would like to speak to a UCR Health physician with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis, please contact us at 1-844-827-8000 or click here to schedule an in-person or virtual appointment.
About UCR Health
UCR Health is comprised of a team of physicians, specialists, and healthcare professionals dedicated to improving people’s health. With five medical offices located throughout Inland Empire and Coachella Valley, UCR Health is growing to meet the healthcare needs of the region, bringing innovative, culturally sensitive medical care to the community. Established alongside the School of Medicine at the University of California, Riverside, UCR Health’s patient-centered primary care and specialty services deliver university-based healthcare excellence and innovation to all communities.