Endometriosis, the disease of the modern woman

Displacement of the endometrium, which affects 6 million Brazilians, can cause sterility and intense cramps

The cramps and pains in the body that suffer most women during the menstrual period may not simply be natural reflexes of the reproductive cycle. On this National Endometriosis Fight Day (8), the alert is for women to watch for signs of their body that may indicate the problem of endometriosis.

Known as the ” modern woman’s disease “, endometriosis is characterized by the presence of the endometrium, tissue that lines the uterus and fixes the embryo, outside the organ itself. The illness is usually related to the woman of the last decade due to overwork in the society of contemporary society, which can cause the famous lack of time to take care of one’s own body and to perceive signs of illness.

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According to data from the Brazilian Association of Endometriosis (ABEND), the disease affects around six million Brazilians, which is equivalent to approximately 15% of the female population in the reproductive phase. Of these, 30% have a chance of becoming sterile.

Endometriosis does not have fixed and unanimous causes, however, the most accepted by the medical community is that of retrograde menstruation.

“In most women, the menstrual flow does not just go out through the vagina but also through the tubes into the body, such as in the belly, the ovary and the bladder,” explains Dr. Ivan Penna, a human reproduction specialist and professor of medicine of the Federal Fluminense University (UFF).

From this internal flow, the tissue is fixed in places where it should not, and there is a change in its structure, after healing. This way, women menstruate every month in these regions of the body, which increases and repeats the disorder, causing endometriosis.


Endometriosis causes various maladies, such as bowel obstruction and decreased bladder capacity, which may culminate in sterility. However, what plagues women most with the disease is the pain it causes.

“The cramps and pains of women with endometriosis during menstruation become so intense that they become incapacitating, an impediment to well-being,” says Penna. “Feeling pains in the menstrual period is not normal, although many see this way, and should be observed if they are progressive, increasing in frequency or intensity over time.”


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The best procedure for the disease depends on the symptoms presented. In some cases, temporary clinical, contraceptive-based treatment is sufficient, for example.

However, when more active intervention is required, surgery is recommended, which consists of removal of the endometrium from sites other than the uterus.

Still, as the menstrual cycle continues, a woman can return to developing endometriosis even after surgery. “The only cure for endometriosis is menopause,” says Penna.


For women who know they have endometriosis and wish to become pregnant, it is advisable to freeze the eggs for later in vitro fertilization. As the treatment is surgical, the ovary can be lost, which would prevent a natural fertilization.