Endometriosis is a disease state in which some of this tissue that lines the inside of the uterine cavity (endometrium) has spread outside the uterus. The amount of tissue and its location may vary. Typically, endometriosis is found near the uterus and around the ovaries, but is occasionally found in distant locations such as the lung.
Endometriosis can vary in its presentation and nature. In some women, only a few small lesions are present and these do not spread. In other women, endometriosis may become very extensive and invasive. Due to its irritating nature, this may lead to blocked or damaged fallopian tubes and varying degrees of scarring in the pelvis and abdomen. Despite the invasive nature, endometriosis is not a cancer, and cancer rarely develops within endometriotic tissue. Approximately 5-10% of all women have endometriosis.Symptoms
Endometriosis may or may not be symptomatic. When it is symptomatic, it may be associated with severely painful period cramps, constant pain throughout the month, and painful intercourse. The degree of symptoms, surprisingly, is not associated with the amount of visible endometriosis present. Endometriosis may be associated with infertility, especially if it is extensive enough to block fallopian tubes or distort the normal pelvic anatomy because of scarring. Among patients who have infertility about 30% have endometriosis.