Tag Archives: March Endometriosis awareness month

Endometriosis Awareness: Mirena – Help or a Hormonal Mess?

This is the second post I’ve written today. Earlier, I typed out a post about endometriosis awareness events, and how this month especially, they frequently occur in medical practices or companies with a partial stake in endometriosis. Perhaps that post will come tomorrow as I feel it could use some polishing.

This Is How It Starts…  

The inspiration for this post — ” Mirena® – Help or a Hormonal Mess? — is thanks to a portion of my recent hormonal blood work arriving in my in-box. All blood work ordered through my endocrinologist, neurologist and general practitioner’s offices become available to me via e-mail once the lab clears them. Due to some recent symptoms and long term endocrine issues I will not bore you all with, my endocrinologist felt it worth running a full hormonal panel. Honestly, when all was said and done, I don’t think there’s a hormone she didn’t check!

The problem is — and we discussed this… at length — the  Mirena® interferes with hormonal testing. Considerably, in fact.

For those familiar with my  Mirena® journey, this part will be old news and I’m sorry. Bear with me for a moment.

For those popping in thanks to a search term (Hello! Thanks for stopping by!), I had my first  Mirena® IUD inserted in April of 2007. I was terrified. After reading Internet horror stories, I had psyched myself into thinking I would pass out, bleed excessively, have a ruptured uterus… whatever could happen, it would pretty much happen. So I reached for two Tylenol #3 with codeine (a prescription pain medication), which effectively numbed any pain I may have experienced during the insertion. I went home, had a few cramps and slept the rest of the afternoon. After some faint spotting and mild cramping, my periods stopped. I only had spotting again after my laparoscopy in 2008. And that was only a few times (due to the doctor moving my uterus to remove adhesions).

It wasn’t all smooth sailing along the way. I had moments where I wondered if the Mirena was causing moodiness and cramping. It did increase my tendency to create ovarian cysts, which can become rather painful. The reason for my 2008 laparoscopy, for example, was due to a cyst that developed on an ovary. We watched it through ultrasound as it sat on my ovary for nearly a year. When it developed into a thick walled septated cyst — the kind that can develop into cancer — it was lap time. Naturally, my doctor was eager to get it out.

Shhh.. the “H” Word… and a New Mirena Comes to the Rescue

Because of my history and my pain level, I felt ready for a hysterectomy. I was already living without a period (this was all menopause was, right?!?! Ha!). What’s the big deal. Thankfully that gynecologist’s office had a nurse practitioner who had had endometriosis and had a hysterectomy at 30. There I sat, a naive but in pain. She convinced me that the better option was to stick it out with Mirena®, or try another reversible endometriosis treatment. And now I am glad I took her advice.

But that brings me to 2013. I am on my second  Mirena®.

The second insertion did not go so smoothly.

As I was saying, my endocrinologist decided to run some hormone panels (read: every single hormone panel know to man). We knew that because the  Mirena® causes your period to stop — or amenorrhea —  many of the lab values could be off. Hormones like follicle stimulating hormone, estrogen and testosterone — to name a few — fluctuate depending on where you are in your cycle. That’s right. They rise and fall in the beginning, middle and end, and differences can signal problems —if you know where you are in your cycle. How am I supposed to know that when a) I don’t have a period, and b) when I did have a period, my cycles were anovulatory. Because I didn’t always ovulate, my periods were irregular, always heavy and lasted — on average — 2-3 days.

So Does the  Mirena® Mess With Hormones? 

Unlike it’s non-hormone releasing cousin IUD, Mirena® releases synthetic progestogen — in the form of levonorgestrel — into the uterus. The manufacturer, Bayer Cross ®, stands firm that only a little bit of the levonorgestrel gets into the blood stream.

Yet,there is an extensive hormone related list on their website of possible side effects. Bayer Cross ® Bayer insists that the following are experienced by 5% under:

Vaginal discharge

• Breast pain or tenderness

• Nausea

• Nervousness

• Inflammation of cervix, vulva or vagina

• Pelvic pain during your period

• Back pain

• Weight increase

• Decreased sex drive

• High blood pressure

• Pain during intercourse

• Anemia

• Unusual hair growth or loss

• Skin irritations (such as hives, rash, eczema or itching)

• Feeling bloated

• Swelling of hands and/or feet

• Expulsion

I have daily search strings for “mirena and endometriosis,” “mirena headache,” “mirena and migraine,” mirena weight gain,” “mirena and acne,” “mirena depression,” and the list goes on. These must be from the IUD’s hormonal component. You do not see this with the non-hormonal IUD.

I do not have a period, though. And as for cysts… while they do hurt, I have learned to live with them. As a wise doctor once told me, “That’s terrible saying you’ve learned to live with the pain.” I told him I didn’t have a choice. I had a life to live and didn’t have time to wait for him to fix me.

So, will I be getting it out? No. As long as it’s keeping my monthly hell away, it’s staying put. Of course, unless my endocrinologist calls Monday morning and says those test numbers are telling her a different story. But then again… like I said… that little thing in my uterus is making it hard for us to know when to test!

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The Stages of Endometriosis: Part Two

Back on March 3, 2009, to celebrate Endometriosis Awareness Month (#MarchBloggingMadnessForEndometriosisAwareness), I wrote a highly visited post – The Stages of Endometriosis. This post was the introduction to my 2009 Endometriosis Blogging campaign. Somehow, though, it became so much more to my readers.

Over the past 4 years that post has been seen by 59, 780 people (as of press time) and received 190 comments. (I will take this opportunity to note that I do not confirm all comments submitted to this blog. Hateful comments directed at another poster, a group of people, or religion, or myself are not posted.) One of these posters asked if I would be writing more on the topic of endometriosis staging in the near future. Seeing as March was around the corner, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to expand the Stages of Endometriosis topic with a second post.

Enjoy, and thank you for your continued visits, e-mails and comments! (And for trudging through my non-endometriosis related health posts lately.) Happy Endometriosis Awareness Month! Together we are stronger! 

Disclaimer: Please keep in mind, each person’s personal pain threshold and response to symptoms are different, regardless the disease staging. How you may feel with Stage I or Stage II may be the same as how someone else feel with Stage III or Stage IV. The “mild” implants and adhesions of Stage I and II may send you to countless doctor appointments, or your surgeon may coincidentally discover Stage IV severe — and symptom free — endometriosis while performing an exploratory laparoscopy for infertility. Each symptom section is meant for general knowledge, and is no way a reflection for how you may feel or how you should feel while in that particular stage of the disease. If you have questions regarding which stage you are in, or how you should fee, please consult your personal physician. 

Stage I

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Severity: Stage I is classified by a “dusting” of endometriosis that’s only on the pelvic organ surfaces. Endometrial implants may be found — in small amounts — on the outside of the uterus, the ovaries and fallopian tubes or the walls of the pelvic cavity (or cul-de-sac). Implants will be few in number, are small in size and are present on one ovary. Those on the pelvic walls or peritoneum will be less than 3 centimeters, and any on the ovary will always be under 1 centimeter in size. If adhesions are present, they are thin, transparent and few in quantity.

endostage1

Diagnosing & Treatment: Unless you are experiencing unusually heavy menstruation (menorrhagia), unusually painful periods (dysmenorrhea) or pain during intercourse (dyspareunia), your doctor may take the 1) wait and see approach or 2) prescribe hormonal birth control.

Hormonal birth control is now available in varying doses and delivery methods, and has become a useful non-surgical tool if your doctor suspects endometriosis. Although, it is not fool-proof and in no way replaces a diagnostic laparoscopy.

Whether you’re on “the pill,” “the ring,” “the patch,” or “the shot,” hormonal birth controls are designed to produce the same biological result: to stop your menstrual cycle. This does not always equate to stopping your period. Some pills taken non-stop, meaning you skip the weekly dose of sugar pills and continue taking the hormonal pills for four months — like Seasonique — can stop your menstrual cycle.

The Mirena is a hormonal releasing intrauterine birth control device doctors use to halt the progression of endometriosis, as well. Unlike the pill, patch or ring, a trained doctor, midwife or nurse practitioner must insert Mirena. Because the cervix is dilated,  Mirena is best used in women who have already had children, or at least been pregnant. Some women’s menstrual cycles are stopped with the Mirena, but without the menopausal side effects that come with medications like Lupron (which will be discussed later). It’s important to note, though, that not all women get this response. Others report heavy bleeding and cramping with Mirena. This can be so bad that the device is removed way before its 5 year expiration. Some women experience side effects that are worse than their endometriosis complaints. 

According to the Cleveland Clinic, some 30 to 40% of the estimated 5.5 million women in North America who have endometriosis experience infertility. In the past, women with suspected endometriosis — especially in an early stage — were advised to have children. Women with the disease were encouraged to have children as early in the disease progression as possible. It was and still unknown exactly why infertility is so common among women with endometriosis. Current research is exploring possible endometriosis related causes that effect infertility, but science has yet to prove the myth that pregnant cures endometriosis. In fact, there is ample evidence — from the millions of women who still have endometriosis after delivering children — that pregnancy doesn’t cure the disease.

Remember, regardless the stage, there is no cure for endometriosis.

Stage II

endostage2

Severity: Stage II is classified by the presence of deeper endometrial implants, along with the superficial implants seen with Stage I. Also present may be the thin, filmy adhesions on the ovaries, fallopian tubes cul-de-sac and uterus. Adhesions should be thin enough to measure under a 1/3 of an inch. If they are thicker, you may be progressing into Stage III moderate disease. Deep endometriosis implants will be over 3 centimeters in-depth, and contained to the peritoneum. There will be signs of superficial endometriosis on both ovaries, with implants being at least 1 centimeter. And there will be thin adhesions noted on one ovary.

Diagnosing & Treatment: 

Because of Stage II is still considered a mild form of the disease, doctors may be hesitant to perform diagnostic laparoscopies in women who have not had children or may want children in the near future. This is because any pelvic or abdominal surgery can create adhesions, which can bind to the ovaries and may interfere with fertility.

Treatments are the same for Stage I and may include Non-Steroid Anti-Inflammatory medications, such as Ibuprofen. Using heat and ice during your menstrual cycle, or when cramping is present, can also relax the pelvic nerves and muscles. Some women have found pain relief through meditation and biofeedback, though this does not resolve issues with bleeding or halt implants growth.

stage2

During your cycle, your ovaries produce estrogen and progesterone. Endometrial implants feed off the estrogen, using this hormone to spread and grow in size. Hormonal treatments meant to halt the ovaries estrogen production are aimed at the later, more sever stages of endometriosis. Stage I and Stage II are considered mild enough — at least clinically — to be treated with surgical excision or removal of implants via laser, and hormonal birth control.

Some doctors will offer estrogen-suppressing medication to Stage II patients once all other medication and surgical options have failed; however, due to the cost insurance company’s bear, doctors must often prove the patient has exhausted all other options. Be warned: Some insurance must have documented proof of this. Your doctor’s testimony may not be enough to get that expensive monthly Lupron shot if you’re Stage II.

Stage III

stage3

Severity: There is a marked difference between Stage III and Stage II endometriosis. With this stage, there can be both superficial and deep implants in the peritoneum, along with a partial obliteration of the cul-de-sac. Often, there will be deep endometrial implants on one ovary. The presence of chocolate cysts are common with both this stage and Stage IV. Adhesions will vary between thin, filmy, dense and massive, and cover the ovary — or ovaries — and fallopian tubes.

Diagnosing & Treatment: 

Often, but not always, by this stage, women seek medical help for their endometriosis symptoms. Pelvic pain, urinary urgency, sexual discomfort and/or excessive menstrual bleeding or bleeding in between periods causes concern. When this stage causes discomfort, it can be a mind-numbing, isolating pain that leaves the sufferer bed bound for days out of each month.

endostage3a

Evidence, such as extensive adhesions, chocolate cysts and an abnormally thickened endometrial layer may be seen on an ultrasound, MRI or CT scan, and can point your physician toward a diagnosis. While these signs are likely to be endometriosis, a diagnosis of endometriosis cannot be made without a diagnostic laparoscopy. A doctor should make visual, and preferably histological, confirmation of endometriosis through laparoscopy.

Stage IV 

stage4

Severity: 

Stage IV presents with a range of superficial and deep implants scattered across the peritoneum. The cul-de-sac is completely obliterated by this stage of the disease and at least one ovary will have deep implants that are at least 1 to 3 centimeters in width. At least one ovary and/or fallopian tube will be covered in a thick blanket of adhesions.

endostage4

Diagnosing & Treatment:

Some women have Stage IV endometriosis and have absolutely no symptoms. Other only experience mild cramping or unusually heavy periods.

For women with surgically confirmed Stage III or IV endometriosis, though, doctor’s have medicinal and surgical options for treating the disease.

Remember, there is no cure for endometriosis. Any treatment or surgery’s goal is to temporarily alleviate pain or disease progression.

Medicinal Options Often Reserved for Stage III & IV: 

Due to their long and short-term side effects and insurance costs, doctors are not likely to turn to these medications as a first line defense. 

Estrogen Suppressing Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone (GnRH) Agonists:

  • Zoladex – this medication comes in pellet form, which is then placed under your skin by injection. A nurse or physician must inject a new Zoladex pellet into your subcutaneous belly fat every 28 days. 
  • Lupron – A common medication that’s available in month or three-month injections. You must see your physician for this shot, as well.
  • Synarel – Harder to control, but easier to stop if you experience unwanted side effects, Synarel is a twice daily nasal spray you self-administer.

Purpose & Side Effects: 

GnRH agonists shut down estrogen production, which in turn, slows down the growth of endometriosis. Abruptly withdrawing estrogen mimics  an immediate menopause — complete with hot flashes and mood swings. Unfortunately, your body’s estrogen levels don’t experience a gradual decline but a sudden plummet. This can negatively affect both your bone and mental health. As it stops estrogen, though, GnRH medications will stop your period. For women with excessive bleeding and pain, this may be a welcome change.

Be cautious: GnRH antagonists are not to be used for an extended period. And consider getting a second opinion if a doctor is a) too eager to prescribe GnRH medications (look for medication freebies littering the exam room that advertise a particular drug),  b) doesn’t suggest trying other options first or c) hasn’t confirmed your diagnosis via a surgical laparoscopy.

Progestin Treatment: 

Progestin mimics the progesterone your ovaries naturally create; fooling the body into thinking it is pregnant. For women with endometriosis, this is an ideal state (hence. why gynecologists once told women to get pregnant) because progesterone reduces the endometrial lining. Since it reduces the endometrial lining in the uterus, it also reduces any endometriosis implants contained in the pelvic cavity.

Progestin is available in several pills, by a 90-day Depo-Provera injection and the 5-year, slow releasing Mirena intrauterine device. Progestin treatments can stop your monthly period due to their ability to thin the endometrial lining and slow ovulation.

Surgical Options


Besides laser or excision removal during a laparoscopy, some women opt for a hysterectomy to ease their endometriosis symptoms. Unfortunately, many women experience a resurgence of their disease despite the removal of their ovaries and uterus.

In order to starve endometrial implants, you must remove estrogen from the body for a minimum of 6 months. I’ve heard this includes even estrogen from plant and food sources, but this may be going to the extreme.

If you are close to menopause, or already entering into a natural menopause, then surgical menopause — which includes the abrupt removal of estrogen producing organs — may not be too severe. If, however, you are young and have a high pre-op estrogen level, this sudden drop can cause drastic mental and physical side effects.

Unlike GnRH antagonists, pills and UIDs, a hysterectomy is a surgical remedy that holds no guarantees and you cannot reverse. On that note, though, if you have severe bleeding that does not abate with other medical interventions, a hysterectomy may be your best bet. As always, a hysterectomy — or whether to take a pill or use a patch — is a purely personal decision. I do not endorse one treatment over the other. Speak with your doctor and make an informed decision concerning your personal medical history, diagnosis, estimated progression and personal preference.  

March is Endometriosis Month!

March is endometriosis month…. and so it is fitting that I am writing this from my couch, with my trusty heating pad nestled cozily on my lap, right? It would also be fitting for me to write this while self-medicated on whatever I could get my hands on to numb the pain. Right?

Why is this the picture of endometriosis? A bed-ridden woman, clutching the heating pad to her stomach. Crying. Desperate. Alone.

Recently, I described endometriosis to a friend. I described the clinical aspects – not the reality. The clinical aspects, after all, are so clinical they become abstract – a random hodgepodge of symptoms. When we distance ourselves, as doctors often do, it’s just a text-book reading of bodily occurrences. I believe I had a doctor once sum this attitude towards endometriosis as, “you have some extra discharge during your period and possibly more cramps.” Wow, if only.

As I described to my friend how endometrial implants grow on places outside the uterus causing them to bleed along with your monthly cycle, her statement was, “well, that doesn’t sound good.”

As I described how this causes cramping and internal adhesions. Her response, “are you still able to exercise?”

The doctor (the countless doctors) – my friend – most of my family (as well as yours) – they don’t understand. And who can blame them? While I may see a list of symptoms for other invisible illnesses and sympathize with the afflicted (mainly, again, because I, too, have an invisible illness), I can never experience that person’s pain. I haven’t been there.

Yet, there remains that picture of endometriosis – the grimacing, crying woman. The broken woman. The woman sitting alone (alone because everyone she knows is out living life while she is curled up in pain). And while this picture may seem fitting – nay, even true at times with this disease – how does it help us?

I’ve heard from women – women with varying stages of endometriosis and symptom severity – and they, too, are fed up with this picture. They no longer want people to label them by their disease, by their pain. They no longer want doctors to label them “drug seeker” or “hypochondriac”.

They also no longer want to be alone in this fight. And thankfully because of this blog and the myriad number of women blogging about endometriosis this month, when they Google “endometriosis”, they won’t be alone.

This March, let’s change the picture of endometriosis. The saying goes: March comes in like a lion and leaves a lamb. This March, let’s be that lion. Let them – the doctors, husbands, boyfriends, friends – hear our roar!

Together, we are stronger. Together, we have a voice.

Endometriosis = Cancer?

The big question a woman may ask her gynecologist after being diagnosed with endometriosis is, “will this turn into cancer?” And if your doctor is like mine, he/she will give a reassuring “no” and smile.

Yet researchers have been saying since 2003 that women who have ovarian endometriosis, as seen in the picture below, and do not get it treated via laparoscopy or with hormone therapy to starve off the tissue, have an increased risk of having their endometriosis turn into cancer.

ovarian_endometriosis_thumb_big1As you can see, there are chocolate cysts on the ovary and other signs of endometriosis.

 The researchers at Tottori University School of Medicine in Nishimachi, Japan presented a case of a 23 year-old woman who underwent surgery for an endometrioma in their October 15, 2003,  submission to Gynecological Oncology. At time of surgery she also present with a high serum CA 125 level. Now, it isn’t uncommon for endometriosis patients to have high CA 125 levels, especially with endometriomas. Perhaps, this is cause of the correlation? Then 14 months later, the same patient presents with ovarian cancer. The article states: “Histological examination revealed endometrioid adenocarcinoma with transitions between endometriosis and adenocarcinoma.” The researchers conclude that patients presenting with endometrial cysts  and high CA 125 serum levels should be watched – even if they are young.

** Reason #(who keeps count anymore) why I’m switching gyno’s: I had a “suspicious” cyst that persisted for over a year. Even though it never grew, it was thick walled. It concerned my doctor enough that she was willing to take the ovary, yet she never once did a CA 125 test. I plan on printing the article I will be linking to in a moment out and taking it to my next gyno – especially since I’ve been in “I have a cyst on that darn left ovary AGAIN!!!” grief” since Thursday.**

You can find the article here: Ovarian endometrioid adenocarcinoma arising from endometriosis in a young woman

And from the abstract of the article “GSTM1 null polymorphism and susceptibility to endometriosis and ovarian cancer” as published in the January 2001 Oxford Press journal, Carcinogenesis, researchers S.W. Baxter, E.J. Thomas and I.G. Campbell write:

It is likely that heritable genetic factors contribute to thedevelopment of endometriosis, which is a putative precursorof the endometrioid and clear cell histological subtypes ofovarian cancer. The phase II glutathione S-transferases (GSTs)are a family of enzymes responsible for metabolism of a broadrange of xenobiotics and carcinogens. Allelic variants of GSTsthat have impaired detoxification function may increase therate of genetic damage and thereby increase the susceptibilityto cancer. The null genetic polymorphism in the gene encodingthe GST class µ (GSTM1) enzyme has been reported to besignificantly elevated in endometriosis patients and may representan endometriosis susceptibility allele. (Taken from the abstract) (GST stands for glutathione).

If you have a cyst that persists, is bothersome, grows, or just worries you – especially if you have known ovarian endometriosis – ask your doctor for an extensive work-up of ultrasound, with possible MRI, and a CA-125 cancer marker blood test. These test may save your life! If there is any doubt, a good doctor wouldn’t take risks, they would put you in for a lap to get a visual. ALWAYS follow your intuition even if your doctor says “don’t worry, it’s nothing.” It’s worth it to keep your sanity – your peace of mind… and possibly your life.

***MARCH BLOGGING MADNESS FOR ENDOMETRIOSIS AWARENESS***

Estrogen: Fuel for the Endometriosis Bonfire

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Excess estrogen is literally the fuel that lights the endometriosis fire, and makes new implants grow. This is why so many women who undergo a hysterectomy – in the belief that their pain will be abated – suddenly find themselves in agony again shortly after beginning hormone replacement therapy.  With hysterectomies, even with excisions of endometriosis on organs not being removed, there inevitably will be left behind some remnants of endometrial tissue or implants on organs where excisions are not possible. If estrogen therapy is begun too soon post-surgery, this will feed those implants. At least this seems to be the leading medical theory.

How then can we suppress estrogen? Progesterone. The goal of progesterone- only treatment is to lessen or eliminate the monthly period. We know estrogen stimulates the growth of endometriosis, even if you have had a hysterectomy.  But estrogen isn’t just found in a pill! It’s everywhere! In the bio-enhanced meat we consume, the plastics we use…. it’s everywhere.  If you give an endometriosis woman progesterone, it will shed the lining of her uterus without some of the side effects of estrogen.

Besides being a wonderful birth control alternatives for those who are estrogen sensitive, progesterone-only treatments starve the endometrial implants over time. As your uterine lining — or endometrium starves off — the endometrial implants will recede, as well.  This is how progesterone only endometriosis treatments like the Mirena IUC and medroxyprogesterone  (Depo-Provera) work.

If BCP pills are working for your endometriosis, great! But if they fail to starve off the growths, perhaps it’s time to look into progesterone only options. Why do I use the Mirena? Migraines! My migraines are estrogen sensitive – foods and meds! The Mirena has made my life livable again. If you are estrogen dominant, the Birth Control Pill is not a good option for you.  But you may say it’s even harder to avoid estrogen out in the world. After all estrogen derivatives proliferate our daily lives more than you might think. They are in:

  • Meat products
  • Dairy
  • Pesticide sprays that are sprayed on the produce we consume
  • Plastic products
  • Spermicidal condoms
  • Sunscreen

The list is really endless! There are two types of estrogen found in the environment – xenoestrogen and phytoestrogen. Xenoestrogen is man-made estrogen and this can cause havoc on the female and male reproductive system. The effects of xenoestrogen’s on reproduction gained notoriety in 1980 when there was a large chemical spill of DDT in Lake Apopka in Lake Apopka, Florida. See the page Xenoestrogen’s Cause Endometriosis by Dr. Elizabeth Smith for another example and more information.

Dichloro-Diphenyl-Trichloroethane, or DDT for short, is synthetic pesticide that was used during the World War II to control disease spreading lice and mosquitoes. Then in 1962, Biologist Rachel Carson published the famous book Silent Spring stating that DDT may cause cancer. As a result of the publication, in 1972, DDT was banned from the United States but is still in use as a pesticide in countries WE in-port fruit from! That’s right, you may be eating fruit laced with DDT on it unless you buy from an American producer. LOOK AT THOSE STICKERS!!!

But back to the xenoestrogens… scientists found that the alligator population was declining. There were not as many baby gators being born in the spring post-DDT spill. After studying this, they concluded that the xenoestrogens in the DDT had resulted in some of the gators being infertile.

Xenoestrogens are also found in the Bisphenol-A that had so much hype in the news recently. Not only is there cause for cancer, but the link to xenoestrogens and endometriosis makes me not want to nuke plastic! How about you?

Then we come to phytoestrogen – the plant estrogen. You may think if it comes from Mother Nature then it can’t be bad for me, right? Wrong. With endometriosis, it’s about picking the right phytoestrogen’s to feed out bodies and our wombs. Here are some you should avoid:

  • Coffee. Coffee is a phytoestrogen – and even decaf is out.
  • Red Clover Tea
  • Alfalfa Sprouts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pomegranates
  • Fennel
  • Licorice
  • Beer
  • Oregano
  • Verbena
  • Nutmeg
  • Turmeric
  • Thyme
  • Cumin
  • Chamomile
  • Cloves
  • Excess Soy

Now what do I mean by excess soy? Please see Dr.Weil’s article on this topic. He suggests that consuming soy products will help women with endometriosis, but that we shouldn’t consume over 40 mg. of soy isoflavones daily.

I, like others, have found that a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean meats has helped my endometriosis. I eat organic as much as possible to avoid things like DDT, and because I know those things were grown or bred in the best possible conditions for my optimal health and the environments. And in the case of animals, they were treated fairly, were not given growth hormones, or fed animal by-products.

Also, the above list of food consumed in small amounts is not likely to have a huge impact on your endometriosis. But if you are a chronic coffee or beer drinker, eat alfalfa sprouts or pomegranates frequently, you may want to consider not doing so and seeing if your endometriosis pain improves. Like everything in life, moderation is key.

****MARCH BLOGGING MADNESS FOR ENDOMETRIOSIS AWARENESS****

Julia Roy

Are you on Twitter?

Have you heard of Julia Roy???

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If you aren’t following @juliaroy on Twitter, here’s why you should be…

1) She is the host of the YouTube show Tweetweek. The February 18th Tweetweek has had 2,501 viewers. With her Tweetweeks, she goes through the popular hash tags and events covered on Twitter during the week.

2) She is  the self-proclaimed “an entirely digital girl.”

3) She has, as of the writing of this post, 17,378 followers! This is a staggering number!

4) To raise money for Twestival’s Charity: Water, Julia Roy auctioned off an evening of drinks and dinner with herself. The final bid was $1,549.00!!!

5)  If we can all follow her this month on Twitter, and then DM her and politely ask her to cover the #endo hash tag for National Endometriosis Awareness Month, we may see this happen.

The more we use that #endo, the more popularity it’s going to gain this month! Keep encouraging other women you know to use it! The more awareness we can bring to this disease the better!

*MARCH BLOGGING MADNESS FOR ENDOMETRIOSIS AWARENESS*

Endometriosis Pilates

I haven’t tried these, and each individual should know their limits when beginning an exercise program or trying something new. Whether these work to help relieve pain and discomfort, I don’t know. If any of you have done these and can comment, please share! Enjoy! And happy ENDOMETRIOSIS AWARENESS MONTH!!!!

MARCH BLOGGING MADNESS FOR ENDOMETRIOSIS AWARENESS!!!!!!!