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Will I Be Able to Get Pregnant If I'm Diagnosed With Endometriosis?

Around 5 million women in the United States share your diagnosis of endometriosis, with its potential symptoms of pelvic and lower back pain, heavy bleeding, fatigue and severe menstrual cramping. A condition that occurs when uterine lining grows elsewhere in the body, endometriosis is the most commonly reported obstacle to conception. This problem doesn’t close the door to pregnancy, but it does present special challenges. Your doctor can determine the best treatment choices to help you to achieve your dream of becoming a mom.

Causes of Infertility

Moderate to severe endometriosis can cause adhesions that prevent your egg from leaving your ovary to be fertilized. In minimal to mild endometriosis, inflammation in the pelvis triggers cells to attack the sperm, and the body produces poor eggs. The National Institutes of Health notes that patches of endometriosis may distort the pelvic anatomy, making the travel of sperm and egg difficult, or problems with the endometrium may hamper the attachment of the embryo to the uterus.

Proactive Measures

Pregnancy may require more time for women with endometriosis. Since women find it easier to get pregnant in their 20s than women in their 30s or 40s, women with endometriosis may want to think about pregnancy early. Safeguard your reproductive health by maintaining a healthy body with nutritious foods, exercise and adequate rest. Consult a fertility specialist if you don’t become pregnant after six months.

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Assisted Reproductive Technologies

Infertility related to endometriosis can be treated with assisted reproductive technologies such as intra-uterine insemination, or IUI, and in-vitro fertilization, or IVF. IUI involves artificially placing the partner’s or a donor’s sperm into the women’s uterus after hormonal drugs stimulate the ovaries to release additional eggs. Your doctor may recommend a IVF if you doesn’t become pregnant after three to four treatment cycles with IUI. Your doctor can determine if you are a candidate for assisted reproductive technology.

Surgical Intervention

Surgery may be a treatment option when endometriosis damages an organ or changes an organ’s position. For example, an egg may not enter the Fallopian tube if adhesions cause the ovaries or Fallopian tubes to become stuck in an abnormal manner. Laparoscopic surgery may be more likely to increase the chances of pregnancy for women with minimal to mild endometriosis better than diagnosis with laparoscopy alone. For moderate to severe endometriosis, surgery is less likely to be effective.

RELATED: IVF Procedure After Using Fertility Drugs

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