My endometriosis journey: How I dealt with painkillers and hormonal therapies
The exact treatment methods for endometriosis will depend on your overall health and the severity of the condition. In part 1, I am sharing what treatment options I had to go through for my severe endometriosis.
In an earlier post I had shared how I discovered my painful periods were not just some days of unbearable pain and discomfort, but was actually a severe case of endometriosis.
While the initial diagnosis made me really concerned and unhappy (I hate going to the doctor or taking medicines, and this was something that was making me take so many medicines and pain killers), I realized that if I had to make the most of the condition, I would have to understand the treatment options and take a call.
Before I move on to talking about the various endometriosis options, I would mention once again that I do not come from a medical background, and I am sharing only my personal experience here.
So yes, please remember that endometriosis is a very serious health condition and you should definitely speak to your gynaecologist about it, if you have excessive pain or discomfort during your periods, or if you have already been diagnosed and want to understand the treatment options.
What are the treatment options?
There are three main types of treatment and management options available for endometriosis, which include pain medications, hormone therapies and finally, surgery.
When I was first diagnosed with endometriosis, which was about two years back, I was immediately put on a strong course of painkillers. This was because the pain was so unbearable that I was unable to speak for days.
The first thing my doctor had to do was get me in a condition where I would be able to breathe properly and sit and talk normally. However, only taking pain killers will not help, as it will just ease the pain a little, but will not work on any other symptoms or causes of endometriosis.
In my case, the painkillers had to continue for almost one and half years, along with other options that were introduced later in the treatment. Of course it goes without saying that taking painkillers for so long has had a huge negative impact on my overall health.
Please remember that even if painkillers may be available over the counter without a prescription, you should only take it after checking with your doctor.
The first thing I had to go through was a D and C procedure (dilation and curettage) which is a type of surgical procedure. In this, the doctor will first dilate your cervix and then insert an instrument to scrape out the lining of your uterus.
This is a small procedure, and depending on your overall health, your doctor will either discharge you from the hospital within three to four hours of the procedure, or may ask you to stay overnight to monitor your health.
I had to go through the D and C procedure twice in two months, and both the times had to stay over for a couple of days.
This was just after I was off painkillers by choice and was in severe pain and discomfort. I have gone through more options and I will share them next week in a related article.
Till then, if any of you also have been diagnosed with endometriosis, do share what treatment methods you have tried.