Could Endometriosis Be the Reason You Aren’t Getting Pregnant?

Over 10% of women between the ages of 15 to 44 suffer from endometriosis, according to the Office on Women’s Health. In addition to causing pain and discomfort that can be debilitating for many women, endometriosis can make it harder to get pregnant. If you’ve been diagnosed or suspect that you may be suffering from endometriosis and are concerned about your fertility, we can help. 

At Kennesaw Gynecology, our gynecologist Dr. Angel Paas and her team of women’s health professionals offer endometriosis and other gynecology and aesthetic services from our office in Kennesaw, Georgia.  

How endometriosis affects pregnancy and fertility

Endometriosis causes the endometrial tissue that lines the uterus to grow outside of the uterus in other parts of the pelvis. While it typically affects the ovaries and fallopian tubes, it can also grow in other parts of the body as well. 

During a normal menstrual cycle, the endometrial tissue thickens and then breaks down and passes out of the uterus in the form of a monthly period when a woman isn’t pregnant. However, when endometrial-like tissue grows outside of the uterus, it gets stuck and can eventually turn into blockages and growths like fibroids or scar tissue.

In addition to causing a variety of pain symptoms, endometriosis can lead to infertility. If left untreated, blockages in the fallopian tubes and ovaries may interfere with your ability to get pregnant.

Signs and symptoms of endometriosis

Many women experience strong menstrual cramps in the days leading up to and during their monthly period, but endometriosis causes severe pain and cramping that can be debilitating. Other menstrual symptoms, like abnormally heavy bleeding and longer periods, are also common.

Since the signs of endometriosis are similar to normal menstrual symptoms, they can be easy to ignore or dismiss as intense “PMS.” However, you should always consult your doctor when you notice a change in your periods, especially if you’re in pain.

Other common symptoms of endometriosis include: 

Your symptoms may be mild, moderate, or severe. However, the severity of your symptoms doesn’t always reflect how advanced or serious the disease is. For example, you may have heavy cramps in the early stage of the disease, before you’re at risk of fertility problems.  

When to see a gynecologist

Endometriosis can make getting pregnant more difficult for some women. Thankfully, there are treatment options available to help you manage your symptoms and conceive a child.

Schedule an appointment if your menstrual symptoms seem more severe than normal and interfere with your normal routine and quality of life. Many women are first diagnosed with endometriosis when they try to conceive and have difficulty getting pregnant. If you’re having trouble conceiving, Dr. Paas performs a pelvic exam or imaging test to determine if endometriosis is the cause.

Treatment for endometriosis varies and depends on the severity of your condition and your plans for getting pregnant. Dr. Paas offers comprehensive diagnostic plans and personalized treatment based on your health and family planning goals.

For more information about endometriosis diagnosis, treatment, and fertility issues, contact our office today to schedule an appointment, or book an appointment online.

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