Endometriosis surgery, minimally invasive options
Many women are unaware that they have endometriosis, which may be an underlying cause of their infertility. Endometriosis is defined as uterine tissue that grows outside of the uterus. When endometrial tissue is left behind to grow within a woman’s pelvic region, rather than being flushed out during her period, the cells respond to hormonal patterns and begin to build up every month—unnaturally replicating the menstrual cycle outside of the uterus.
These cells may grow on a woman’s ovaries or fallopian tubes—and even bladder and intestines—sometimes causing intense pain. However, many women do not feel any symptoms. The only indicator that they may have endometriosis is the unexplained inability to get pregnant each month.
In fact, 50 percent of women experiencing infertility have endometriosis as an underlying cause.
Your best bet for the removal of endometriosis is a reproductive surgeon.
For a condition as arresting as endometriosis, its removal may improve your chances for getting pregnant. A skilled fertility specialist who has experience handling the delicate organs of the reproductive system can remove endometrial tissue during a procedure called a laparoscopy.
During a laparoscopic surgery, a reproductive surgeon makes two or three very small incisions in the patient’s lower abdomen. Using small instruments and a lighted camera, the surgeon can usually identify and remove a woman’s excess endometrial tissue with minimal trauma to the surgical site.
The benefits of a minimally invasive laparoscopic procedure for endometriosis include:
- The patient may go home the day of the fertility surgery, and can usually resume usual activities within a day.
- The risk of complications is very small.
- Removal of endometrial tissue improves a woman’s ability to get pregnant.
The only way for a fertility surgeon to determine if a woman has endometriosis, and its severity, is to perform a laparoscopy. Sonograms alone cannot diagnose endometriosis.
No further endometriosis treatment is usually needed after a laparoscopy; the fertility surgeon can usually diagnose and treat the condition during the procedure.
If you are considering surgery for endometriosis and plan to have children, contact us at Texas Fertility Center for more information.