The primary symptoms of endometriosis are pain and infertility.
Other common symptoms of endometriosis include:
In addition, women who are diagnosed with endometriosis may have painful bladder syndrome, digestive or gastrointestinal symptoms similar to a bowel disorder, as well as fatigue, tiredness, or lack of energy.2
For some women, the pain symptoms associated with endometriosis get milder after menopause, but this is not always the case. Hormone therapy such as estrogen or birth control pills, given to reduce menopausal symptoms, may cause these endometriosis symptoms to continue.
Researchers know that pain is a primary symptom of endometriosis, but it is not known how pain arises in women with endometriosis.
The severity of pain does not correspond with the number, location, or extent of endometriosis lesions. Some women with only a few small lesions experience severe pain; other women may have very large patches of endometriosis, but only experience little pain.3,4
Current evidence suggests several possible explanations for pain associated with endometriosis, including (but not limited to)3,4:
Pain from endometriosis can be severe, interfering with day-to-day activities. Understanding how endometriosis is related to pain is a very active area of research because it could allow for more effective treatments for this specific type of pain.
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