Endometriosis is a chronic disease that consists of the appearance of endometrial tissue in any anatomical location other than its natural location, which is the inner part of the uterus (endometrium). This endometrial tissue can grow anywhere in the human body. However, it occurs most frequently in the Fallopian tubes, ovaries, vagina, rectum and peritoneum.
The initial lesions are usually small and have a reddish appearance. However, over time they can take on a very different appearance, ranging from the formation of small scars, to growing disproportionately and forming chocolate-like cysts inside them.
It is common that endometriosis is accompanied by scars generated by the inflammatory reaction of the body trying to fight a tissue that is in a place where it does not belong. These scars form adhesions or abnormal bands of fibrous tissue which cause the pelvic tissues and organs to stick to each other, generating pain and functional limitations.
These lesions, together with secondary inflammation and adhesions, may cause symptoms such as severe pelvic pain, menstrual periods with severe pain (dysmenorrhea) or difficulty in achieving and sustaining a pregnancy.
It is important to clarify that this is a benign disease and is not related to cancer or any other type of neoplastic disease. It is, however, one of the most frequent causes of pelvic pain and infertility. Therefore, it is important to detect it at an early stage and treat it in a proper manner. The treatment is to avoid complications related to the compromised organs, alterations in the quality of life of patients, as well as the interference it may generate to achieve a natural gestation.