#HealthBytes: Know everything about the four stages of endometriosis
Endometriosis is a medical condition that occurs when the endometrial tissue lining the uterus grows outside of the uterus, spreading to parts like the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and organs in the pelvic region. Some of the most recognized symptoms of endometriosis include pelvic pain, painful urination, gastrointestinal issues, abnormal periods, fertility issues, etc. It can also be classified on the basis of different stages.
The condition is usually confirmed through a laparoscopy
The mentioned symptoms can manifest in a host of other health conditions as well. Hence, a laparoscopic test is carried out by doctors to confirm the condition. The pelvic region is viewed with a camera and is examined for any signs of endometriosis like implanted endometrial tissue, adhesions, or scar tissue. During the course of the laparoscopy, the doctors also identify the stage.
Stages one and two: Small number of implants are present
Stage one of endometriosis is termed "minimal endometriosis" as there are fewer implants and the lesions are small. In stage two, known as "mild endometriosis," the implants are deeper with more scars. There may also be inflammation in or around the pelvic cavity. However, it is understood that the pain and discomfort levels may still be severe for some women.
Stage three: Cysts are present along with the implants
Stage three is termed "moderate endometriosis" and is characterized by "chocolate cysts" that may be present on at least one ovary. In this stage, there will also be thin bands of tissue formed when the body tries to heal from the inflammation caused by the condition. However, these adhesive tissues can make organs stick together and cause severe pain and nausea.
Stage four: Large cysts and adhesive tissues are present
Stage four is "severe endometriosis," and in addition to the deep implants, there are large cysts on one or both ovaries and several dense adhesions in the pelvic region. At this stage, there may also be lesions on the fallopian tubes and bowels. In extreme cases, endometriosis may also be implanted outside the pelvic region and in organs like the heart, lungs, and brain.
The condition can be treated by managing the symptoms
Endometriosis is a serious disorder that can severely affect your life if left untreated. There is no targeted treatment for it, however, it is possible to manage the symptoms and avoid further complications. Hormonal supplements are commonly prescribed to stop the progression of endometriosis. However, your doctor will advise treatment depending on the age, stage of endometriosis, and the location of implants and scars.