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Saturday, 31 March 2012

Endometriosis Awareness Month: Part 6

This will be the final part of my endometriosis awareness month posting marathon; over the last few weeks I’ve noticed I’ve gained a lot more followers, which is great, so a ‘welcome’ and ‘thank you’ is deserved to new and old followers alike. I hope that I’ve managed to impart some useful knowledge over the last month because I’ve learned so much from women with endo over the years.

For the last post of this month I’m going to do a quick rundown of some of the top endo-related research highlights I haven’t had a chance to cover in full.

A study from Italy examined the incidence of endometriosis in the area of Piedmont and found that women from the South and Central provinces were at, in some cases, a 30% increase in risk of endometriosis than those women in the South-West. The authors of this study suggested that heavier pollution in these regions could be a contributing factor; however it is also possible that different populations in the different provinces may carry certain genetic mutations that make them more susceptible to endometriosis.

Another study from Italy found that women with endometriosis were more likely to be right handed and less likely to be left or mixed handed. Apparently handedness is determined whilst you are still in the womb and due to exposure to certain hormones, so there may be something to that. This study also found that there was no association with birth order, their mother’s age, smoking habits, weight gain or morning sickness. There was also no association between endo and having a low birth weight, being premature or whether or not you were breast fed.

Some good news for a change in the findings from a study in Denmark. This study looked at medical records for women diagnosed with endometriosis and registered to the Danish Hospital Discharge Register from 1977-2007, encompassing a grand total of 37,661 women, and checked to see what other medical conditions they presented with. This, rather large, analysis concluded that women with endometriosis were not at an increased risk of multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus, erythematosus, or Sjogren syndrome, yay!

Urinary tract endometriosis (UTE) was the subject for this article from France, which found that of the 221 women selected to undergo laparoscopic surgery for severe endometriosis, almost a fifth had some involvement of endometriosis on the urinary tract. Unsurprisingly the most common symptoms of women with UTE were dysuria (painful urination), blood in the urine and frequent need for urination. Fortunately, the authors noted that surgical treatment was very effective and diagnosing UTE can even be done with a non-invasive MRI scan.

To California now and a report of endometriosis found in the para-aortic lymph node (which is in the centre of your body, on roughly the same level as the kidneys) in a pregnant woman with a previous history of ovarian endometriosis. The authors state that this could be evidence that endometriosis can spread via the lymphatic system, however as this was the first ever reported case of endometriosis in this location, drawing such conclusions may be premature.

And finally, the award for the most self-explanatory article title goes to this paper.

Wishing you all well and see you again in April!

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