Endometriosis ~ Abdominal Pain ~ Endo ~ Scar Tissue ~ Adhesions ~ Infertility ~ Hysterectomy

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Combating endometriosis

A new surgical procedure offers hope and promise
Vasudha Rai

Ashwini K. Trehan, consultant gynaecological surgeon at Spire Elland Hospital and Dewsbury and District Hospital, UK, is giving many with endometriosis a reason to smile.

While pelvic peritoneal excision surgery (basic laparoscopy where parts affected with endometriosis are removed) is effective, it has a 50% recurrence rate and may result in the removal of ovaries. Dr Trehan’s technique is called total pelvic peritoneal excision, where the entire pelvic lining is removed to prevent recurrence.

In a study conducted by Dr Trehan and F. Sanaullah, post-CCT clinical fellow in minimal access surgery, and C. Rooke, clinical audit facilitator, at Dewsbury and District Hospital in 2008, it was found that the new surgery improved the symptoms of endometriosis in 89.6% of women.

The circumstances in which removing the entire pelvic lining may not work is when the disease has spread into the uterus or in spots where endometriosis has reached very deep into the organs.

Dr Trehan says ovarian removal is the main reason for early death in women because it increases the risk of cancer, heart disease and acute menopause.

For more information, visit www.endometriosis-consultant.co.uk

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Friday, August 19, 2011

Batt Publishes First Scholarly History of Endometriosis

Published August 9, 2011

More than 150 years have elapsed since endometriosis was discovered and described. Yet, until now, no scholarly history has ever been written about the disease, which affects millions of women worldwide.

This summer Springer Publishing released “A History of Endometriosis” by Ronald E. Batt, MD ’58, PhD, professor in the Department of Gynecology-Obstetrics.

The back cover describes Batt’s task as “daunting” and states that the book “provides a stunning chronological and biographical history of endometriosis.”

An Expert Clinician and Practiced Historian
An expert in infertility and reproductive endocrinology, Batt also is a noted historian of medicine in Buffalo and Western New York.

He is writing a historical essay on the life and research of Kornel Ludwig Terplan, MD, professor of pathology at UB from 1933 to 1960.

In addition, he is researching a new book on the history of endometriosis from World War II to the present.

In the book, Batt provides a detailed account of the progress made in identifying and treating the once enigmatic condition from its discovery in 1860 by Austrian physician Carl Rokitansky through World War II.


New hope for endometriosis sufferers

By Cheah Ui-Hoon

Women who suffer from endometriosis now have another drug to turn to in their struggle to manage the condition. A new pill, Visanne, has been designed to tackle the problem differently from conventional hormonal medicine. Whereas the latter prevents the ovaries from producing estrogen - and gives women menopausal side effects as a result - the new drug does not block the production of estrogen.

'This new medicine takes a completely different approach. It blocks ovulation, thus lowering the chances of endometriosis, but it does not block estrogen,' explains Thomas Strowitzki, director of the Department of Gynaecological Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine at the University of Heidelberg, Germany.

Conventional GnRH (Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone) analogue drugs put women in a menopausal state for the duration of the treatment. They block the pituitary gland, which stops estrogen production, thus relieving the pain associated with endometriosis. Women are put on this treatment for up to a maximum 12-month course.

Side effects from the resulting low levels of estrogen, however, are common, and most women will experience at least one or two symptoms commonly associated with the menopause. These include insomnia, headaches, mood swings, acne, dizziness, depression, decreased libido and vaginal dryness, although they usually disappear soon after conventional GnRH treatment ends.

Endometriosis is a condition in which the cells of the womb lining (the endometrium) are found outside the womb, usually in the pelvis and around the womb, ovaries and fallopian tubes. Unlike endometrial cells that are normally found in the uterus and which are shed during menstruation, those that grow outside the uterus remain in place and are stimulated during each menstrual cycle. Over the long term, this process gives rise to pain and can also result in scars or lesions on the tubes, ovaries, and surrounding structures in the pelvis.

Left undiagnosed or untreated, endometriosis can be a frustrating condition. Painful periods can cause a woman to miss work or school, strain sexual relationships, and affect the overall quality of her life. Besides irregular bleeding, endometriosis can also be a cause of infertility.

Dr Strowitzki says that doctors don't know why 15 per cent of fertile women develop endometriosis. 'To be honest, we don't know the risk factors and we don't know which group of women is at risk. We also don't know how to avoid the disease as it's not like cancer,' he adds.