It’s still March, so it’s still Endometriosis Awareness Month! Today we’ll be looking at endometriosis treatment questions and answers. If you missed the first two posts in this series, you can click to read more about an overview of endometriosis as well as info about diagnosing endometriosis.
Why are there so many treatment options? Which one is best?
There are so many options because there is no “magic bullet” option — that is, no single treatment that works best for everyone. The two main categories of treatment include medication and surgery, but each option has its own benefits and drawbacks. When deciding on the best option for a given individual, some helpful questions to consider might be:
Do I have any current health concerns that would render some treatments unsafe? What types of health risks are acceptable to me?
Am I currently trying to conceive, or will I be in the next six to 12 months? Will I ever want to be pregnant in the future?
Aside from significant health risks, what types of factors — side effects, treatment frequency or duration, cost — would make a treatment difficult for me? How long do I need this treatment to last before I can reevaluate?
For specific questions, your best bet is to check with your health care provider. Continue reading →
Remember the Dalkon Shield? Use the phrase “Dalkon Shield” and you conjure up all kinds of horror stories regarding the intrauterine device (IUD). Times have changed, and so has the IUD.
There are two types of IUDs available now, and both are considered very safe to use. Both IUDs are small, T-shaped, flexible plastic devices with threads at the end that are inserted into the uterus through the cervix by a health care professional.
The Mirena IUD is a hormonal device and the Paragard is a copper IUD. The Mirena IUD releases a small amount of progestin, which thickens cervical mucus, on a regular schedule and works by preventing sperm from joining an egg. This device is considered 99.8% effective in preventing pregnancy.
The copper IUD (Paragard) contains no hormones and also works by preventing sperm from joining an egg. Paragard is soft, flexible plastic, with copper wrapped around the ends of the T bar and the base of the T. This device is considered 99.2% effective. Continue reading →