Diagnosing Endometriosis often requires intimate examinations, assessments, and referrals. The diagnosis itself can sometimes be challenging because the only way to definitively diagnose the condition and its stage of progress, is by undergoing laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery. This is an invasive procedure.
A history of symptoms, a pelvic exam, ultrasound scan and MRI may help highlight the likelihood of Endometriosis, however laparoscopic surgery is currently the only way to conclusively diagnose the condition.
A condition as common as Asthma & Diabetes should not take 8 years to diagnose.
Why does it take so long to diagnose Endometriosis?
In the U.K. alone, it currently takes on average 8 years from the onset of symptoms to achieving a diagnosis of Endometriosis. This is because there is very little public awareness around Endometriosis, and the symptoms can also be very similar to those of several other health conditions, such as Acute appendicitis; interstitial cystitis and Crohn’s disease; often making it difficult for clinicians to diagnose Endometriosis.
To make matters more challenging, many of these other conditions can also co-exist with Endometriosis.
Many of those experiencing symptoms of Endometriosis also struggle in getting health care professionals to believe the severity of their pain, resulting in a delayed diagnosis, disease progression, requiring complex surgeries, and issues with fertility.
If your periods are stopping you from carrying out day-to-day activities, this is NOT normal.
When should I seek help?
If you have noticed changes around your menstrual cycle, or if your periods are unusually painful and you are experiencing symptoms that are stopping you from attending school or work or taking part in day-to-day activities, this is NOT normal.
There is a chance you might have Endometriosis, or it could be the cause of something else. It’s a good idea to make an appointment and discuss this with your General Practitioner (GP) as early as possible.