Jewels For Awareness
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The Endometriosis Foundation of RI
PO Box 268
Albion, RI 02802-0268
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*This information is not intended for substitution of medical advice. Please consult your physician.
The Endometriosis Foundation of RI is a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization committed to providing valuable research to those looking for answers and information in the areas of Endometriosis and to wholly use the Foundations knowledge and skills to increase awareness throughout.
Endometriosis affects roughly 200 million women throughout the world, and is also one of the most poorly understood conditions.
Endometriosis is an often painful disorder in which tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus, the endometrium, grows outside your uterus. Endometriosis most commonly involves your ovaries, bowel or the tissue lining your pelvis. Rarely, endometrial tissue may spread beyond your pelvic region.
In endometriosis, displaced endometrial tissue continues to act as it normally would: It thickens, breaks down and bleeds with each menstrual cycle. And because this displaced tissue has no way to exit your body, it becomes trapped. Surrounding tissue can become irritated, eventually developing scar tissue and adhesions (abnormal tissue that binds organs together.)
This process can cause pain, sometimes severe, especially during your period. Fertility problems also may develop. Fortunately, effective treatments are available.
Symptoms of Endometriosis may include:
• Painful menstrual cramps
• Heavy periods or bleeding between periods
• Bloating, constipation and/or diarrhea
• Lower Back/Abdominal pain
• Pain during or after sexual intercourse
Stages of Endometriosis
A staging system has been developed by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (formerly the American Fertility Society). The staging form assigns points, based on the location and depth of the endometriosis. Stage does not necessarily correlate to the level of pain a woman may experience. The stages are classified according to the following:
• Stage I (minimal) 1-5 points: Findings restricted to only superficial lesions and possibly a few filmy adhesions.
• Stage II (mild) 6-15 points: Some deep lesions are present in the cul-de-sac.
• Stage III (moderate) 16-40 points: Some deep lesions are present in the cul-de-sac, plus presence of endometriomas on the ovary and more adhesions.
• Stage IV (severe) 40 points plus: Deep lesions are present in the cul-de-sac, plus presence of large endometriomas on the ovary and extensive adhesions.