Endometriosis: acupuncture support
The most common symptom associated with endometriosis is period pain (dysmenorrhoea), although some women don’t know they have endometriosis because they experience no obvious signs or symptoms.
However, the more common profile of a woman living with endometriosis includes some or all of the following:
- extremely painful periods (dysmenorrhoea)
- infertility (only an issue if trying to conceive)
- heavy menstrual loss (menorrhagia)
- unpredictable timing of the menstrual bleed
- painful sexual intercourse (dyspareunia)
- pelvic pain increasing towards the end of the menstrual bleed
- pelvic pain prior to ovulation and prior to menstruation
- isolated pelvic pain
- family history of endometriosis
- if endometriosis is located in the bowel or bladder then pain on bowel motions or urination may be present.
What causes endometriosis?
The precise mechanism behind endometriosis is unclear.
The common hormonal link is oestrogen – the hormone produced in the ovaries to help build menstrual tissue in the uterus.
It is likely that women with endometriosis have endometrial tissue outside the uterus.
This tissue responds to the normal spike in oestrogen that occurs in the menstrual cycle.
With this spike, women with endometriosis produce ‘extra’ endometrial tissue and experience pain and heavy menstrual loss.
How might my doctor treat endometriosis?
Many of the medications associated with reducing the signs and symptoms associated with endometriosis will also make you infertile (while you are taking them).
Therefore, women seeking to conceive cannot take these medications and so this is one reason they may seek endometriosis natural treatment with acupuncture and herbal medicine.
Surgery is another treatment – the idea being removing the endometriosis provides a window of opportunity for conception.
Pain management is another treatment option involving medication to manage pain or more advanced procedures involving pain specialists.
A great resource for women living with endometriosis is QENDO (Endometriosis Queensland).
Natural treatment: what are my options?
Endometriosis natural treatment is a non-surgical, non-hormonal approach to the management of signs and symptoms associated with endometriosis.
The natural therapy treatment for endometriosis you choose will determine the approach taken by your practitioner.
A naturopath will work with diet, lifestyle, supplements and maybe herbs.
An acupuncture practitioner like will support your desired therapeutic outcome with acupuncture, diet and lifestyle suggestions and where appropriate, herbal medicine.
Does natural treatment with acupuncture replace standard medical care?
In short, never. The great thing about acupuncture is that it sits beautifully alongside any medical care you might be receiving.
While your diagnosis of ‘endometriosis’ is of interest to your acupuncture practitioner, it is not essential because acupuncturists will always rely on your unique presentation of signs and symptoms.
Your Chinese medicine diagnosis never replaces your medical diagnosis of endometriosis but sits alongside it, providing a framework for your endometriosis natural treatment.