ENDOMETRIOSIS can be a painful condition that plagues many women for years.
It’s hard to treat and hard to diagnose – but one expert has now said there might be a way to ‘calculate’ who may suffer with the condition.
The condition refers to when tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside in the abdomen.
Common symptoms include pain during intercourse, heavy periods, infertility and excessive menstrual cramps – with one in ten women worldwide believed to have the condition.
It can also hinder infertility, and in order to try and remove this barrier for women one expert is creating an ‘endo calculator’.
Dr Charlotte Reddington, researcher at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Australia is looking at biological markers of women that might suggest they are more likely to develop the condition.
So far during her research, Dr Reddington says that indicators such as your hair and eye colour can make a difference as to whether or not you have the condition.
She has also found that a woman’s Body Mass Index (BMI) could help determine this.
BMI is a measure that uses both your height and weight to determine if you are at a healthy weight.
Dr Reddington said that the distance between the vagina and the anus, which is an indicator of exposure to oestrogen, could also be a factor.
In many cases, endometriosis can only be detected through surgery – which can be painful and isn’t always guaranteed to work.
“We would really like people to have a better idea of what the odds of endometriosis being present were before going ahead with surgery.
“We’re trying to make this calculator based off people’s symptoms and other demographics about them: their age, height and weight, and genetic factors”, Dr Reddington told The Age.
She said her team wants to combine the factors in order to make a better informed calculation as to what the risk of endometriosis is.
Other experts have said that tests like this could help women who are struggling to fall pregnant.
IVF specialist, Dr Vanessa Ross said that in women who have endometriosis, in 30 to 50 per cent of them, a main symptom is that they will struggle to get pregnant.
She added that women with the condition often have worse outcomes including a higher rate of miscarriage, gestational diabetes and babies with low birth weight.
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