The following is provided by Heather C. Guidone, Program Director, Center for Endometriosis Care
For 176 Million Globally, Endometriosis is a Real Pain
Often marginalized as simply “painful periods,” endometriosis is a poorly-understood disease characterized by the presence of tissue somewhat resembling the lining of the uterus (endometrium), found outside the womb elsewhere in the body. This tissue, which is not identical to normal endometrium, is typically found on the reproductive organs and within the abdominopelvic region, but can also occur in other parts of the body including diaphragm, lungs and uncommonly, even the brain. Endometriosis has also been diagnosed in rare males, and may be linked to other painful concerns including certain autoimmune disorders, Interstitial Cystitis, Pudendal Neuralgia, pelvic floor dysfunction, and infrequently, specific malignancies. The definitive cause remains unclear, but it is likely that affected individuals are born with the disease.