Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue from the membrane that normally lines the uterus — the endometrium — grows outside the uterus, typically on the ovaries, fallopian tubes, intestines or other areas in the pelvis. This tissue acts just like the endometrium in accumulating blood in the monthly menses period, but it has no place to shed the blood at the end of the cycle. The accumulation of tissue and blood can cause inflammation and scarring, which can lead to other conditions, particularly pelvic pain and infertility. Blood trapped in the ovaries may develop into benign cysts called endometrioma.
Between 25 and 50 percent of infertile women are estimated to have endometriosis. Endometriosis affects more than one million women in the United States and at this time, the exact cause of the condition is unknown.

Typically, symptoms of endometriosis worsen over time. The severity of symptoms varies, and some women may not experience any symptoms at all. Symptoms may stop after menopause or during pregnancy, though they will return after the woman has the baby and begins menstruating again.
Common symptoms may include:

Pelvic pain and cramping before and during periods
Lower back and stomach pain during periods
Excessive bleeding during periods
Pelvic pain during intercourse
Fatigue
Diarrhea
Constipation
Nausea
Infertility
These symptoms can occur with other conditions. If you're experiencing any of these symptoms, see your doctor to determine the cause.

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