March is a big month for women! Not only is it Women’s History Month, but it’s also Endometriosis Awareness Month. According to an article posted in the National Library of Medicine by Frontiers in Global Women’s Health, endometriosis affects 6.5 million women in the US and over 190 million worldwide.
Although those numbers are staggering, there are a lot of setbacks in the world of endometriosis research and treatment. In today’s blog, we’re going to be discussing what those are, along with how MyLocalStudy is helping open doors for women to access endometriosis studies.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis, commonly referred to as “endo,” is a painful condition where tissue, much like the tissue that lines your uterus, grows outside of your uterus. Endo is typically found on the ovaries, fallopian tubes, outer surface layer of the uterus, and/or on the tissues holding the uterus in place.
Those with endometriosis often report severe pelvic pain during menstrual cycles. Although pain and cramping during menstrual cycles are normal, women with endo experience pain that is worse and can progress over time. The most common symptoms may include the following:
- Painful periods accompanied by lower back and/or abdominal pain
- Excessive bleeding during periods
- Pain during bowel movements or urination
- Pain during intercourse
- Diarrhea, constipation, bloating, or nausea during menstrual periods
Current Treatments and Research for Endometriosis
The diagnosis for endometriosis is significantly delayed due to the surgery required to diagnose it. Because of this, individuals are often offered pain management or birth control options. The problem is that these options are typically ineffective in getting to the root cause. Neither helps solve infertility issues or enhanced risks of certain cancers that come with an endo diagnosis.
Regarding research, Frontiers in Global Women’s Health describes funding for endo research as “…limited, with funding from bodies like the National Institutes of Health (NIH) constituting only 0.038% of the 2022 health budget.” This is astonishing when you consider that endometriosis affects 11% of the female population.
How to Get Involved and Make a Difference
Here at MyLocalStudy, we are all about creating awareness and providing opportunity. Even if you don’t personally suffer from endo or know someone who does, you never know the impact you may have by sharing this resource. You can do so by sharing on social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.
Interested in learning more about participating in a clinical trial? If you or a loved one are living with endometriosis, visit our website and enter your zip code to find enrolling endometriosis studies near you. Remember, together we can change lives!