Symptoms of endometriosis are managed conservatively whenever possible. For mild symptoms, NSAIDS/analgesics can be used to relieve pain.
Hormones are a treatment option which has pros and cons. Lowering the amount of estrogen in the body decreases its ability to stimulate growth of endometrial tissue, but can have drawbacks, such as negatively affecting fertility.
These factors are weighed on an individual basis. Options include:
- Estrogen/progestin combination (oral, vaginal ring or transdermal)
- Progestogens (oral medication such as progesterone pill, levonorgestrel-releasing system, etonogestrel-releasing subdermal implant, IUD)
- Gn-RH agonists (combined hormones add back therapy to prevent bone loss and hypoestrogenic symptoms)
- GnRH antagonist
Surgery through laparoscopy may be recommended to remove affected tissues. This is generally an option for severe symptoms or when other options do not provide relief.
Nutrition choices have been found to impact symptoms of endometriosis, so adjusting your diet may improve how you feel.
The recommended anti-inflammatory approach includes:
- Add fruits and vegetables daily, including berries, oranges, cherries, tomatoes and green leafy vegetables.
- Reduce saturated and trans fats, especially highly processed foods, red meats and ham, deep-fat fried foods and palm and coconut oils.
- Increase omega-3 fats, such as extra virgin olive oil, flax and chia seeds, avocado and tree nuts like walnuts.