A study undertaken over several years has indicated that the most extensive form of Endometriosis may be predicted by the severity of menstrual periods in teenage girls.
The extensive form of Endometriosis is know as “Deep Infiltrating Endometriosis” (DIE). There are three distinct forms of Endometriosis (not to be confused with different stages/levels): Superficial Endometriosis, Ovarian Endometriosis and Deep Infiltrating Endometriosis. DEep Infiltrating Endometriosis is the most extensive, women with this condition will usually have extensive deposits of Endometriosis leading to adhesions in multiple parts of the body, including the vagina, bladder and ligaments that attach the uterus to the pelvis.
It is not unusual for several years (or longer) to go before a woman is diagnosed with Endometriosis due to the difficulty in diagnosis (the only reliable way is still a laproscopy and direct examination of the endometrium cells) and the number of diseases that can be similar to Endometriosis or may present at a similar time due to complications. However the study, undertaken by Dr Charles Chapron and colleagues included nearly 230 women who had surgery at a medical center between 2004 and 2009, of these 43% had DIE and the rest had the less extensive forms (Ovarian and Superficial).
During the study symptoms and histories were taken, this has led to a general conclusion (however more studies are needed from multiple sources to confirm or to enable more firm conclusions) that women who suffered from more painful periods and were prescribed birth control pills to treat this pain were more likely to suffer from DIE. Such evidence could lead to faster diagnosis of this severe type of Endometriosis.
However the study also concluded that any advance in diagnosis would not prevent the eventual progression to this invasive form of Endometriosis.
Original article source content (for the purposes of brevity this has been interpreted and re-written)
SOURCE: Fertility and Sterility, online November 11, 2010.