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is a condition in which tissue that is normally only in your uterus grows outside of the uterus. Endometriosis causes tissue that should be shed during a monthly period to grow on your ovaries, fallopian tubes, bladder, or other organs. Organs and tissue may stick together and cause inflammation and pain.

Common symptoms include the following:

  • Abdominal pain or nausea and vomiting before or during your period
  • Painful periods
  • Feeling full or bloated
  • Dizziness or fatigue
  • Heavy periods, or vaginal bleeding at times other than during your monthly period
  • Infertility (being unable to get pregnant)
  • Lower back pain or painful bowel movements during your monthly periods
  • Pain during or after sex
  • Pain when you urinate

Seek care immediately if:

  • You have severe pain that does not go away after you take pain medicine.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • Your symptoms return after treatment.
  • You have heavy or unusual vaginal bleeding.
  • You see blood in your urine or bowel movement.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.


  • Hormones may help shrink endometrial tissue and decrease pain and inflammation. You may be given birth control pills, androgen hormones, or medicine that makes your body produce less of certain hormones.
  • Acetaminophen decreases pain and is available without a doctor's order. Ask how much to take and how often to take it. Follow directions. Acetaminophen can cause liver damage if not taken correctly.
  • NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. This medicine is available with or without a doctor's order. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If you take blood thinner medicine, always ask your healthcare provider if NSAIDs are safe for you. Always read the medicine label and follow directions.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.


  • Apply heat on your abdomen for 20 to 30 minutes every 2 hours for as many days as directed. Heat helps decrease pain and muscle spasms.
  • Exercise regularly to help reduce symptoms, such as pain. Ask about the best exercise plan for you.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.