What is endometriosis?


In this article:

  • Endometriosis is an inflammatory condition that occurs when tissues similar to the lining of your uterus grow outside your uterus.

  • Severe menstrual cramps, infertility, and pain during sexual intercourse are common signs of endometriosis.

  • For National Endometriosis Awareness Month in March, we’ve compiled a list of resources to help you understand the health challenges of endometriosis and the care it requires.

Severe menstrual cramps and heavy bleeding every month. Chronic lower back pain. Infertility. Painful sexual intercourse. If you’re one of the millions of Americans with endometriosis, this list of symptoms is probably all too familiar.

Endometriosis occurs when tissues similar to the tissues lining your uterus grows in areas of your body where they don’t belong, including the outer surface of your uterus and on your fallopian tubes, bowels, and ovaries. The condition has no known cause and most commonly affects people in their 30s and 40s.

For National Endometriosis Awareness Month this March, we’ve gathered articles that can help you learn more about endometriosis and how to live with its effect on your life. Learn what our experts have to say.

From diagnosis to treatment

Arm yourself with knowledge about endometriosis with these articles outlining the basics of managing your condition. Our women’s health experts detail a wide range of topics, including recognizing symptoms, getting a timely diagnosis, and understanding your treatment options.

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Living with endometriosis

Without treatment, the health challenges caused by endometriosis can invade your life and prevent you from doing the things you enjoy. Learn about pain relief options, the importance of self-care, and when to call your doctor with this easy-to-understand overview from the National Institutes of Health. Although there’s currently no cure for endometriosis, this guide can help you lessen its impact on your quality of life.

Read more.

Hormone treatments may offer relief

Treatment options that suppress your hormones and limit your menstrual cycles, such as birth control pills or IUDs containing hormones, can be effective in many cases. Learn what your doctor looks for to determine if hormone therapy is right for you. Then get an overview of the types of hormone treatments and a look at surgical care if hormones don't provide adequate relief.

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Four signs to look for

Many signs of endometriosis, such as cramps and back pain, are often considered something you “just have to live with” every month. But they could be warning signs that something’s wrong. Our experts share the four symptoms of endometriosis you shouldn’t ignore.

Read more.


Find a doctor

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Related resources

Women's Health Clinic offers relationship-focused care

Providence Women’s Health Services

Office on Women’s Health: Endometriosis

Endometriosis Foundation of America

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.

About the Author

The Providence Women's Health team is committed to providing useful and actionable insights, tips and advice to ensure women of all types can live their healthiest lives.

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