So I have endometriosis which causes me excruciating back and pelvic pain as well as bloating.
I got the mirena coil which helped a lot for the pain. I then went paleo and decided to remove mirena and the symptoms came back with a vengeance.
I know I have estrogen dominance and am now taking the calcium g glucarate, DIM (diindolylmethane), omega 3, vitamin D and passion flower to balance my hormones.
The question is; Will balancing my hormones help the endometriosis in anyway or do I just get surgery to get them removed? I'm highly reluctant to get surgery as I struggle with general anastethic and I have read the laroscopy horror stories.
Anyone with any experience of this? Or suggestions?
Since this post I have had an 80 percent reduction in endo symptoms while waiting for my gynaecological referral. I have been taking 5000iu Vitamin D, Calcium D glucarate and DIM for about 6-8 weeks.
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I know a few women friends who have suffered with various levels of endometriosis. all 3 ended up having either complete (2) or partial hysterectomies (1) and 3 are basically very glad they did....it is truly something they suffered through over the years and in many ways it ruled their lives. Its something I couldn't even imagine. A few months ago I myself ended up having an ablation for cysts and fibroids and while it's not the same thing I did go "under" (best dang sleep EVER) and it has helped a great deal. I didn't realize how miserable I was feeling until I wasn't feeling it anymore. I know it's a huge step but if it's ruling our life, making you miserable I encourage you to truly consider it. What are your struggles with general? Are you scared or is it something else? I've had a general 3x in my life...it is a bit scary, but it's workable. I wish ou well, I know this isn't easy.
I have had 2 endometriosis surgeries, the first in 2001 and the second in 2009. I also struggle with estrogen dominance. Regarding the surgery vs toughing it out...there comes a time when you cannot stand the pain anymore. I chose to have the surgery and was much more knowledgable about it the second time. I found a MD that was extremely well trained and successful with surgical excision, much better than laser ablation with lower risk of adhesions returning.
Post surgery, I took prometrium for about a year, but it encouraged weight gain. I switched to 2-3 tsps of powdered Maca per day. It is an adaptogen and seems to have helped with the heavy periods. The greater the quantity and frequency of the maca, the better the cycles are. I also use cramp bark tincture to help with cramping.
As a side note, I have been gluten free for 3 years and Paleo for about 2 years. I find that my bloating and fluid retention is better with absolutely no cow dairy. Occasionally, I have a bit of goat cheese.
If you want Dr info, write my name at gmail. Best of luck!
I wouldn't take advice on endometriosis from a non-endo source. :) Check out some of the endometriosis or pelvic pain online support groups. You can talk to women who have gone through what you are going through and get some perspective. There are many different options for treating endo and the most important factor in long term success is the skill of your specialist. I do mean specialist, not just a gynecologist.
That said I went through one laproscopy 6 years ago, before I went paleo and it gave me my life back. They were able to remove adhesions, tumors and put my organs back into their correct locations. Honestly it was that bad in there! Doing physical therapy post surgery helped reduce any scaring (internal and external) and taught me how to deal with the pain when it flares up.
After going paleo, most of the remaining pain went away but I still can't live without hormonal assistance. That is not a failure on my part or of paleo but an acknowledgement that it doesn't cure cancer. :)
Best of luck!
I definitely think diet can help, but there may be other factors that also need attention.
I have worked with clients with endo--some of whom had sexual abuse in childhood. Clearing that trauma was really helpful in reducing the endo significantly. If I had been working with nutrition at the time, I feel confident that we could have cleared the endo completely with diet.
Dietary & emotional changes can take some time, so supplemental bio-identical Progesterone (cream or suppositories) may be helpful in the short-term for addressing pain. Progesterone is the reason that endo usually subsides in pregnancy.
Get your Vitamin D level checked, too.
I think a hysterectomy should be a last option--that can open a whole other can of worms.
From what I understand, endometriosis is an outgrowth of endometrial tissue--it goes where it is not supposed to. IMHO, if you have this problem, the tissue will continue to grow (maybe slower with hormone balancing) no matter what. Most women I have known with this problem have opted for a hysterectomy. I have had surgery (not gynecologically related) a couple of times and everything went fine, albeit I was terrified the first time, just like you are. IMHO you should get the surgery and stop the suffering.
I have a couple questions for you, when you said you finally did the surgery, were you referring to a hysterectomy? and if so do you do any hormone replacement therapy? I had my hysterectomy in May and have been put on Estrogen Therapy. I'd dearly love to get off of it and hoped Paleo would help me accomplish that. Anybody had any experience with this?