Endometriosis is a long-term condition that can affect women of any age. It occurs when tissue, similar to the lining of the womb, begins to grow in other places, such as the ovaries and fallopian tubes. Endometriosis can have a significant impact on everyday life.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of Endometriosis can vary, both in occurrence and in severity. While some women may be very badly affected by the symptoms associated with the condition, others may not have any noticeable symptoms.

Some common symptoms of endometriosis include:

  • Pain in the lower back or tummy (pelvic pain) –this usually worsens during your period
  • Period pain that interrupts normal activities
  • Pain during and/or after sex
  • Pain when peeing or pooing, or having blood in urine during your period
  • Nausea
  • Fertility issues

Cause and treatment

There is no specific known cause for endometriosis; however, the most common theory is that the lining of the womb spreads to the pelvis via the fallopian tubes during menstruation. There is limited evidence that this is connected to genetics, however, no specific gene has been identified to cause Endometriosis.

Receiving a diagnosis for endometriosis can be difficult and often takes a long time (on average it takes 7.5 years from onset of symptoms.This is because the symptoms can vary considerably, and many other conditions can cause similar symptoms. The only way to definitively diagnose Endometriosisis via a laparoscopy.

There is no cure for endometriosis, but there are a number of treatment options that can be effective for managing symptoms and reducing disruption to one’s life. These include:

  • Hormone medicines and contraceptives which can cause the uterus lining to become thinner and/or suppress the growth of Endometriosis deposits
  • Surgery to remove parts of the Endometriosis tissue
  • Surgery to remove part or all of the organ affected by endometriosis – such as the womb (hysterectomy)

Medical Cannabis and Endometriosis

There is growing evidence to suggest that medical cannabis can be useful for the management of a number of Endometriosis symptoms and associated problems. For example, cannabinoids may actually be able to inhibit the development of endometrial cysts, which can be a knock-on effect of Endometriosis. Medical cannabis may also help with the management of pain associated with the condition.

Our specialist physicians are experienced in assessing individual cases and helping to determine whether medical cannabis could be an effective option.

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