Has your doctor recommended endometrial ablation? Find out what to expect after the procedure and learn more about the potential risks of this procedure.
Conditions such as endometriosis are very common, but too many women put up with the effects or fail to get the help they need due to a lack of awareness. Knowing what is normal when it comes to periods and being able to recognise endometriosis symptoms could save many women from long years of pain and suffering.
Period pain is something that we often put up with and dismiss as a normal part of being a woman. We may not even bother to tell our doctors about it, and if we do there is still a chance that they will tell us it isn’t a medical issue. However, painful periods can be a sign of many common gynaecological conditions that could result in serious complications if they are not treated. It is therefore essential to speak up about period pain, heavy bleeding and other menstrual problems and to see an endometriosis and fibroids specialist for diagnosis.
Endometriosis happens when tissue that behaves like your womb lining grows in other parts of your body. It can affect
different parts of your body, resulting in different kinds of symptoms. One of the areas that can be affected is your
Endometriosis affects approximately one in ten women, but many of us aren’t aware of this common condition, even when we are experiencing endometriosis symptoms. Too many women are still suffering in silence and believing that their symptoms are just part of a normal menstrual cycle. Read More
Since there is not yet a cure for endometriosis, treatment usually focuses on managing your endometriosis symptoms. If these symptoms are severe, your doctor may recommend surgery to remove the endometrial tissue. However, in most cases treatment will focus on pain relief and hormonal therapy. Read More
Although endometrial ablation comes in several different forms, the way you feel after the operation will be the same. It takes a little time to recover from surgery, but you should soon be able to go back to your normal routine. Read More
Endometrial ablation is a procedure that can be used to treat heavy periods, but it isn’t usually recommended until other options have been tried first. This is because there are some risks and disadvantages associated with the procedure that you will need to consider beforehand.
The Benefits of Endometrial Ablation
Endometrial ablation can be very successful. It can help to make your periods shorter and lighter, or even to stop your periods completely. The treatment is usually more successful in older women, but younger women can take medication to reduce their estrogen production before the procedure as this can make it more effective.
The Risks of Endometrial Ablation
One of the things to consider when you are thinking about having endometrial ablation is that the procedure doesn’t always produce the same results. You may continue having periods after the procedure, although they should be lighter. It is also possible for some of the endometrium to grow back later.
You may also experience some side effects after the procedure, which could include cramps, nausea or discharge. There is also a small risk that you could experience more serious complications, including damage to your cervix or uterus or a build up of fluid in your lungs. Your doctor will explain these risks in detail before you decide whether you should go ahead with the procedure.
It is also important to make sure that endometrial ablation is the right procedure for you. You shouldn’t have an endometrial ablation if your doctor thinks you have a higher than normal risk of developing endometrial cancer. You must also be sure that you won’t want to have children in the future. Most women will be sterile after an endometrial ablation, but you will still need to use birth control as there is a small chance that you could become pregnant if part of the endometrium has survived or regrown, which could be very risky.
At lunchtime on Thursday 15th January 2015 I journeyed on the Eurostar to Paris, Gare Du Nord in the company of a colleague. We drove from Paris to Rouen, which was two and a half hours away and met the Rouen University Hospital team to discuss using specialist laser treatment, plasma jet for cases of endometriosis. On Friday 16th January 2015 I observed a four hour laparoscopic operation on a 30 year old lady, who was experiencing severe pain and infertility associated with endometriosis. Using the latest 3D equipment that is now available at The Princess Grace Hospital, surgery was performed to remove the areas of endometriosis and free and mobilise the bowel as well as treat the ovarian cyst and open the fallopian tubes. This was indeed a very successful operative procedure using the plasma jet Argon laser. We had a team debrief meeting after surgery with the university team and discussed collaborative ways of managing women with endometriosis. It was indeed a great pleasure observing and discussing the management of these cases with my colleague Professor Horace Roman, Professor of Gynaecological Surgery at Rouen University Hospital. The techniques that I have observed and learnt will be of great benefit to my patients in London. I look forward to carrying out advanced techniques for the management of this important condition.