Endometriosis Melbourne

Let’s go over the essential background information on endometriosis, so you know that you are not alone and that treatment and management plans are available.
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Definition Endometriosis Melbourne Mothers

What is endometriosis?

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Key points
  • Endometriosis is a disease where abnormal tissue, similar to endometrial tissue, grows outside the uterus.
  • When you have endometriosis you may have severe period pain, pain during intercourse, and you may have difficulties conceiving.
  • It is a common condition with over 10% of women affected.

Ordinarily, endometrial tissue forms the lining inside your uterus. This is the tissue that allows an embryo to attach and start your pregnancy. When similar endometrial cells start growing outside the uterus, we call this endometriosis.

The causes of endometriosis are unknown. You will come across many theories but gynaecologists do not have absolute clarity as to why this condition occurs to one in nine women.

“As devastating this can be to somebody’s enjoyment of life – it doesn’t kill you so as a result, it’s often hard for women to have their surgery prioritised. Somebody with a heart attack will get treated or operated on straight away. But women with endometriosis endure significant delays and are suffering in silence. At Melbourne Mothers, we recognise all of this.”
You can’t see endometriosis. One day you have no symptoms, then a week per month, you feel you can’t go to work, do sport or go out, and as a result, people might stop asking you out. On top of that, sex can be painful which may impact your relationship.
Vinay Rane - Melbourne Mothers
Vinay Rane - Melbourne Mothers
“It’s imperative for women to know that they have done nothing wrong; they have done nothing to cause this. It’s like being struck by lightning. If you drink vodka every day for 30 years, you get liver disease, and we understand that. But women with endometriosis have done nothing that has caused this. It’s just plain unfair.”
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Symptoms Endometriosis Melbourne Mothers

Symptoms and diagnosis

When should you visit your gynaecologist?

  • Lower abdominal pain or pelvic pain (mostly before your period starts and throughout your period).
  • Changes in bowel or bladder function during your period.
  • Pain emptying your bowels or bladder.
  • Heavy periods.
  • Pain during intercourse.
    Not being able to conceive (infertility).
“It’s a variable disease. Some women don’t have symptoms at all, some have pain around the time their period starts, and therefore they often confuse it with period pain.”

The symptoms of endometriosis can be quite variable. That’s why, on average, it takes over six years for women to seek help for endometriosis.

Laparoscopic surgery remains the only way to make a diagnosis of endometriosis, however, the ability to treat the endometriosis simultaneously remains an advantage.

endometriosis melbourne
Endometriosis Melbourne Mothers Gynaecologist Vinay Rane

Managing Endometriosis Melbourne Mothers

Managing and treating endometriosis

As mentioned above, laparoscopic surgery is the gold standard diagnostic and treatment tool. The abnormal tissue can be removed either by excision(cutting away) or ablation (burning away). At Melbourne Mothers, our gynaecologists much prefer excision as we feel this leads to better results and allows for specimens to be collected and studied under a microscope so that we not only can confirm the diagnosis but also can demonstrate distinct excision margins.

“In this way, we can be more confident in ensuring that we have removed an entire endometriosis deposit and not have left any behind.”
Ultimately, we feel that it is important to tailor every patient’s management plan to their individual needs. Some patients may not require surgery and may be well-managed on medication and physiotherapy alone, whereas others may derive benefit from yoga, pilates, acupuncture and even dietary modifications.
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Treatment Endometriosis Melbourne Mothers

Melbourne Mothers and endometriosis treatment

Suffering from endometriosis is unfair because it targets women at the prime of their life and interferes with almost every aspect of their wellbeing, ranging from debilitating physical pain through to catastrophic effects on one’s mental wellbeing and relationships with family friends and loved ones.
“Whilst endometriosis is in many ways a very unfair disease, it also can take away the fundamental right of procreation and it does all of this without any provocation, that is to say, none of these women has done anything that has brought this disease on or encouraged its development.”

The management and treatment remain some of the most challenging and at the same time rewarding aspects of our practice. I am moved when only weeks after treatment we see some of our most heavily afflicted patients in the community playing sports or shopping at the markets and otherwise enjoying their lives once again.

Professionally, endometriosis surgery is something that is very close to our hearts at Melbourne Mothers as it represents the combination of surgical skills that have been acquired over a long period of time at a number of different centres and in different countries. We are constantly looking at ways to improve our techniques and this kind of surgery inspires cutting-edge surgical innovation which we can put into practice almost immediately. For example, we are now using surgical incisions that are about one quarter the size of those used at some other centres.