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Knowledge

Lecture and discussion on Endometriosis: Chronic pain and diverse symptoms

The photo shows Professor Svetlana Tchaikovski.

Brandenburg/Havel, 9 March 2024

The Brandenburg Medical School Theodor Fontane (MHB) joins this year’s Brandenburg Women’s Weeks with various events. Prof. Dr. Svetlana Tchaikovski directs the clinic of gynecology and obstetrics at the university hospital Brandenburg/Havel. On Thursday, 12 March, she is going to give a lecture (also online) on endometriosis and invites women to a subsequent discussion. Endometriosis is a benign but chronic condition in which cells like those in the endometrium grow outside the uterus. This tissue may then occur in various parts of the body, most frequently on ovaries and in the abdominal and pelvic region.

Prof. Tchaikovski, endometriosis is also called the “chameleon of gynecology”. Why this name, and which are the possible symptoms?
Prof. Tchaikovski: Endometriosis is associated with manifold pain symptoms. Most frequently reported symptoms are heavy and painful periods; others are pain with bowel movements, urination and sexual intercourse, during ovulation and also irrespective of the menstrual cycle. This type of chronic pain is mainly felt in the abdomen but may also occur in back and sides, in scars after surgery, around the navel or even in the shoulders. Accompanying disorders are bloating, fatigue, circulatory problems, nausea and vomiting; this is why the complex clinical picture can point to a range of different diseases. Endometriosis is therefore difficult to diagnose, and as difficult to discover as a well camouflaged chameleon. The symptoms, specifically those relating to menstruation, suggest that it makes sense to mention the possibility of endometriosis to attending gynecologist.

How frequent is endometriosis, and who may be affected?
Endometriosis affects between ten and 15 percent of sexually mature women. The disease develops gradually so that symptoms can become worse over time. Although endometriosis can also appear in young persons, it is most frequently diagnosed in women between 40 and 44 years of age. Treatment can, however, start at an early age for a mild progression.  

How to diagnose and treat endometriosis?
It is not always possible to diagnose endometriosis in gynecological examination, despite some progress in diagnostic methods. Laparoscopy remains the method of choice to be on the safe side. Objectives in indicated laparoscopy should be a histological tissue analysis and the complete removal of endometrial growths. Hormone therapy is imperative after surgery. It may already be started in case of first clinical symptoms suggestive of endometriosis, to avoid the risks involved in anesthesia and surgery. It is moreover advisable to supplement the multimodal therapy by pain therapy, diet change, herbal therapy or acupuncture.

What about the chances of being cured?
Endometriosis is a chronic disorder. Appropriate treatment aims to achieve a high quality of life – an attainable objective in most cases.  

Info: Location of the lecture: MHB, Nicolaiplatz 19, Brandenburg an der Havel, seminar room 1. Time: 5 – 7 p.m. For online participation – free of charge – please use this link: https://mhb-fontane.webex.com/meet/gleichstellung.

Contact:
Georgia Fehler
MHB equality commissioner
Phone: +49 176 84441653
E-Mail: georgia.fehler@mhb-fontane.de

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