Okay somebody actually PM’d me this so I’d respond!
Here’s the deal from what I’ve learned over the years. I’ve seen a reproductive specialist at an infertility clinic after my OBGYN realized i’d ‘outgrown’ her abilities. I’ve had endo since i was 19. My mom had her uterus taken out in her 40’s it was so bad. She had trouble getting pregnant with me and my brother, too. It’s hereditary for the most part and more common than you think. I used to have horrendous periods–vicodin for the pain, vomiting, complete incapacitation. Oh a box and a half of super plus tampons for 7 days, that was always nice. Severe constipation followed by diahhrea, too (isn’t it weird that’s a symptom?). Anyways, been there done that. My doc said it’s likely b/c i had polyps or endo growing and spazzing out on my colon parts. Fun times.
The “test” for endo is a laparoscopy. I had my first one at 21. that took me 8 weeks to recover b/c i was under for 6 hours while they “cleaned me up”. My last one, i was ok after day 4 b/c they didn’t do any body scraping. Anyways, they told me it was so bad I needed to have kids immediately. By 22. Or else. I was a junior in college. Darling Husband was in Iraq so it didn’t really work out. I had to freeze my reproductive cycle, they said.
They put me on lupron depo shots. Once a month every month. My insurance covered them all–at $900 a pop, I’m glad they did =]. It’s like really intense birth control. Even birth control couldn’t stop my periods. They kept coming with fierceness! Nothing could stop the river or the pain. But lupron did! It put me in menopsuase for 6 months. It “reset” my biological clock. Yes i went through menopause with the hot flashes and all that crap. It was pretty craptastic. I’d wake up naked sometimes–i just got too hot in my sleep and stripped! Kinda funny now. Oh gosh, my poor roommate, LOL. Anyways, I had bad mood swings and felt so strange from months 4-6. PMSy all the time. But i had zero periods, also, minus some mild spotting.
Anyways, after 6 months I went through a few more bcs and i settled on seasonique. I was on only progestrin, then only estrogen pills, but this seemed to work the best for me. I’ve been on it for about 2 years now and I can finally keep taking pills to stop my period. Back to back. Periods=scar tissue, so I don’t want to bleed until I am ready to TTC. It’s realy important I don’t develop more scar tissue. I went from having a period every 2 months to every 3 months and now I think I’m on month 5, minus a little bit of spotting. It’s not that bad.
But seriously. If you let endometriosis progress, it CAN turn into infertility. But now you KNOW you have it. Versus being 33 and being like “Hmm something is up”. It has to completely wreck everything in your body though to render you infertile nowadays. Go see a reproductive endocrinologist. A specialist. Seriously. Have the vaginal ultrasound. They stick a big dildo-ey looking probe up you and see what things look like. Your body may be out of place like mine was–i had an ovary stuck to the left side of my body, way out in left field. They were able to put it back in its right place later. Also, that will tell you what your egg follicles look like. I have a low count. 3 on one side and 8 on the other. It’s good to know this!!!! Then the laproscopy will tell you how much scar tissue you have and what your innerds look like. They can remove a lot of it surgically. Also, endo can make your inner parts “sticky”. For me, my lower intestine had endo all over it and it made it stick to my bladder walls of my body. Gross, right? They just took it apart, put in some spongy mesh stuff, scraped off the tissue, and all was well. I went back for another “check up” laproscopy in December to take a look at my tubes. It completely disappered. wtf right? Well, my specialist thinks it’s a combination of diet: (very low sugars, low carbs–also known as an ‘antiinflammatory diet’ because endo IS an inflammatory disease. i actually saw a medical nutritionist for a special no-endo diet) and all the birth control over the past years. I’ve been on ibuprofen for a long time, too, to keep the inflammation down. I get checked for gastritis symptoms, too. But that and the lupron really is when things turned out.
Also…even if you can’t get pregnant naturally, seeing a fertility specialist IN a fertility clinic helped me realize it wasn’t the end of the world. There are SOOOOOO many techniques to help you get pregnant. I got a packet like 2 inches thick to read. It is RIDICULOUS whta they can do. There is mini-IVF, there is IVF, there is clomid, i mean all kinds of stuff. Epsecially women with endometriosis! He said often the #1 problem we have is our fallopian tubes are scarred to hell. He says that even then, the eggs are good! So they just give you clomid, make you produce all these eggs, then syringe them out, fertilize them with the hubs’ man goo, then implant them on your uterus themselves. It’s not that women with endometriosis have trouble staying pregnant–they have trouble with the whole “egg travels to the uterus and implants itself” part.
PM me if you have any questions. I have researched the hell out of this topic, but this is really only my experience with it. My first doc said i was a “trainwreck” so I’m guessing it was pretty bad. I went to the Sher Clinic Now there isn’t one in Maryland but there may be another speciality clinic nearby. Infertility Clinics seem to be on the downlow from what I gather. If not, this place is definitely worth looking into and traveling to. They are crazy with all the stuff they have available! They do a lot of egg freezing for cancer patients too.
Educate yourself more–I’m far far far less scared now, at 24, having met all these people and dealt with it so extensively than I was when I found out at 19 that i had this disease. It scared the crap out of me to be like “ok we need to start TTC at 24 cuz i could be infertile”. There are just plenty of options and opportunities available nowadays to assist you.
Again, PM me if you have any questions about what I went through. It wasnt fun, but I wasn’t about to pop out a kid in college, either.