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Endometriosis is a condition where cells similar to the ones in the lining of the womb (uterus) are found elsewhere in the body, such as the pelvis around the womb, ovaries and fallopian tubes. It can also affect the bowel and bladder. 

Endometriosis can cause irritation, bleeding, inflammation, and scarring. It can affect women from puberty to menopause. 

Symptoms of Endometriosis 

Not everyone will experience symptoms. The symptoms can vary and include a combination of the following:

  • Pain in the lower abdomen or back (pelvic pain) – usually worse during a period.
  • Period pain that stops someone doing their normal activities.
  • Pain during or after sex. 
  • Pain when passing urine. 
  • Pain when opening bowels. 
  • Difficulty becoming pregnant. 

You should contact your GP if you think you may have endometriosis, especially if your symptoms are impacting on your daily life. 


Endometriosis does not necessarily cause infertility but there is an association with fertility problems. Even with severe endometriosis, natural conception is still possible.  

Treatment options 

There is currently no cure for endometriosis but there are a range of treatments available to help manage symptoms such as: 

  • Painkillers 
  • Hormonal treatments and medication
  • Surgery

Your doctor will discuss the options with you. 

Further information and endometriosis support groups