Adenomyosis is the presence of endometrial tissue in the myometrium, the muscular portion of the uterine wall. It is commonly called “endometriosis interna.” Doctors have yet to discover the true cause of adenomyosis. Most women have few or no symptoms early on, but as the condition worsens many women experience heavy menstrual bleeding and painful cramping during their cycles.
Diagnosing adenomyosis is best done by a pathologist through a microscopic evaluation of the uterus or tissue from the uterine wall after the uterus is removed (hysterectomy). Surgeons are sometimes able to make a diagnosis before a hysterectomy , but only if there is a change to the natural contour or texture of the uterus. MRIs can detect adenomyosis if it is 5mm or greater in size, and can differentiate it from other maladies including fibroids and cysts.
Hysterectomy is the most successful method to complete rid the body of adenomyosis, since it often is scattered invisibly throughout the uterine muscles. Conservative methods such as cryo-endometrial ablation can lessen the symptoms, but have not been proven to cause permanent results.
Endometriosis is a painful disorder in which the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus. It is most commonly found on ovaries, bowels or tissue lining of the pelvis, but in rare cases can spread beyond this region. This disorder causes a lot of pain for women, primarily during menstruation. The most common symptoms are pelvic pain, painful periods, excessive bleeding, infertility, painful bowel movements and severe symptoms commonly associated with your period.
The exact causes of endometriosis is unknown and several explanations include other common irregularities in the pelvic region. Diagnosing endometriosis is commonly done with a pelvic exam, ultrasound and laparoscopy. Often a pelvic exam cannot diagnose endometriosis unless it has caused a cyst to form.
The most common ways to treat endometriosis include pain medications to lessen the symptoms and hormone therapy to minimize bleeding during the cycle. However, neither of these methods have been proven to permanently stop all issues associated with the disorder. The most common way to completely treat endometriosis is through surgery, which should be thoroughly discussed with your doctor.
If you think you may have any of these issues, make an appointment with us at Advanced OB-GYN Associates and schedule a diagnostic test as soon as possible so you can learn your treatment options. Please call us at (972) 276-9902 to make an appointment with our experienced and caring staff.
We are here to assist you with everything from guiding you through pregnancy to helping you better understand your body.