Charlotte Fairchild wrote:The general idea is to have a baby as a young woman, and this will help endometriosis.
There are several treatment options for endometriosis:
●Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
●Hormonal birth control
●Other forms of hormone treatment (gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogs)
Each treatment option is discussed in more detail below. The best treatment depends on your symptoms and whether you might want to get pregnant in the future.
Medications — While medications will not get rid of endometriosis, they can help relieve pain. If the medication(s) you try first does not improve your pain within one to three months, your provider may suggest trying another type of medication, or surgery can be discussed as a reasonable next step.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs — NSAIDs are a type of pain medicine that can help to relieve the pain caused by endometriosis. They work by stopping the release of prostaglandins, one of the main chemicals responsible for pain in general as well as painful menstrual periods. Starting these medications one to two days before your period works best to prevent prostaglandin production and therefore reduce menstrual pain. It may take some time, and several doses, for the NSAIDs to block the prostaglandin production and reduce pain. NSAIDs do not shrink or prevent the growth of endometriosis tissue.
Most NSAIDs are available without a prescription, including:
●Ibuprofen (sample brand names: Advil, Motrin) – Follow the package instructions carefully. In general, two tablets are taken for the first dose and one tablet every four to six hours as needed thereafter. These should be taken with food and may be most effective if started one to two days before the onset of pain. Physicians may prescribe higher doses.
●Naproxen (sample brand names: Aleve, Naprosyn) – Follow the package instructions as the dose and frequency differ depending on the formulation. In general, two tablets are taken for the first dose, and one tablet is taken every 8 to 12 hours as needed thereafter, depending on the formulation. All tablets should be taken with food and a full glass of water. Like ibuprofen, naproxen may be more effective if begun a day or two prior to the onset of typical menstrual pain. Physicians may prescribe higher doses.
●Prescription NSAIDs – If over-the-counter NSAIDs are not effective, prescription strengths and formulations may be helpful.
The disadvantage of NSAIDs is that they do not always relieve endometriosis-related pain. NSAIDs probably work better when combined with another treatment, like hormonal birth control. Serious side effects from NSAIDs, although uncommon, include stomach upset, kidney problems, and worsened high blood pressure.
Hormonal birth control methods — Hormonal birth control methods, including oral pills, patches, and vaginal rings, are often helpful in treating pain because they reduce or prevent menstrual bleeding, especially when used continuously (only taking active pills or always using the ring in order to skip the monthly period). Daily oral progestin pills as well as injectable and implantable long-acting progestins may be very effective in managing endometriosis-related pain. A progestin-containing intrauterine device (IUD) can also be very effective in treating pain.
The most common side effects of estrogen-containing hormonal birth control are:
●Irregular vaginal bleeding or "spotting" between periods
These side effects usually improve after using the treatment for several months. Serious side effects (eg, blood clots, stroke, heart attack) are rare in people who do not smoke.
Progestins — Progestins are a synthetic form of a natural hormone called progesterone. This treatment might be recommended if you do not get pain relief from or cannot take hormonal birth control that contains estrogen (for example, if you smoke). Progestins require a prescription and are usually given as a pill or injection. They are not used if you are trying to get pregnant. A progestin-containing IUD delivers very low levels of progestin directly to the uterus and results in markedly lighter and less painful periods. (See "Patient education: Long-acting methods of birth control (Beyond the Basics)", section on 'Intrauterine device'.)
Side effects of progestins can be bothersome for some people. The most common side effects include bloating, weight gain, irregular vaginal bleeding, acne, and, rarely, worsened depression.
r ranson wrote:I'm almost at the minimum age for menopause. Is there some natural way I can encourage it? I would love to get this over with.
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