Adenomyosis: a less commonly diagnosed cause for heavy and painful periods

Adenomyosis is essentially endometriosis of the uterus. In fact, about 30-40% of patients with adenomyosis will also have some endometriosis. In this often painful condition the glands that normally line the uterus grow in the muscle layer of the uterus. This can be in one small area, spread throughout the muscular layer of the uterus, or as a solid tumor (adenomyoma). When present, patients can experience painful periods, heavy periods, infertility, painful bowel movements, difficulty urinating, or no symptoms at all. An ultrasound in the office has about 80% accuracy in diagnosing adenomyosis while an MRI has about 90% accuracy. Treatment consists of either medicines like birth control pills or surgery. Here at the Center for Advanced Gynecology we treat each patient individually with symptoms or suspicion for adenomyosis. A suspected diagnosis of adenomyosis does not always mean you need a hysterectomy!