(sadly still alive, widely spread, and FALSE!)
Here at Vital Health we envision a world of informed and aware women living pain-free lives full of health and purpose. As a part of our vision we we on a mission to empower every women with accurate and cutting edge information. Part of that process starts with dispelling inaccurate information. Here are just a few of the endo myths that are still widely circulated, help us spread the word these myths are FALSE!
1. The pain is all in your head.
No, it’s in your pelvis, which is located down by your pubic bone. It’s not in your head which is above your shoulders. Trust your instincts, you know when (and where) you’re in pain.
2. Painful periods are normal.
No, severe periods are never normal. Some research shows that up to two-thirds of women who suffer from endo had symptoms before they were 20 years old. If a girl’s or woman’s pain is severe enough to keep her away from school or from participating in day-to-day activities, it’s time to listen to her and find specialized help.
3. Endometriosis is a rare disease.
Endo is not at all rare – it’s just not always diagnosed and treated properly. Endo affects more than 5.5 million women in North America and it’s estimated 176 million women have it worldwide.
4. Endometriosis always comes back.
Most cases of recurrence are really persistence and regrowth of disease that was not entirely visualized and appropriately removed. Many if not most women who have proper surgery (laparoscopic, near contact visualization, with wide excision of ALL disease) will NOT have a recurrence of the disease.
5. Hormonal treatments can cure endometriosis.
Drugs based on synthetic hormones, like the Pill, Depo-Provera, Danazol, and Lupron, are routinely used to treat endo by slowing down the load of estrogen that feeds the disease. But in most cases, these hormonal treatments only quiet symptoms, they don’t rid the body of the disease or provide long-term relief. Only surgery (performed correctly) can do that.
6. Pregnancy cures endometriosis.
Pregnancy can quiet the symptoms of endo, just as hormonal drugs can. But it doesn’t make the disease go away. We’re not sure why pregnancy helps suppress the disease, but in most cases endo symptoms resume with reoccurrence of a woman’s menstrual period.
7. Hysterectomy cures endometriosis.
Hysterectomy alone is not an appropriate treatment for endometriosis. Endo tissue can grow under the ovaries, on the ovaries, on the bowel or bladder, next to the uterus, but rarely right on the uterus. Removing the uterus will leave disease behind. Endo can produce its own estrogen and can continue to grow even after a hysterectomy.
8. Any OB/GYN can treat endometriosis.
Surgical treatment of endometriosis requires very specialized techniques that are not taught in the standard OB/GYN residency. Endometriosis patients often require treatment of various co-conditions the routine OB/GYN physician is not familiar with.
For more information refer to chapter three in Dr. Cook’s book “Stop Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain”