The page you are looking for is temporarily unavailable.
Please try again later

Health 'Unexpected finding': Obese women more likely to have severe endometriosis

04:06  12 june  2018
04:06  12 june  2018 Source:   smh.com.au

Not just 'skinny' women get endometriosis

  Not just 'skinny' women get endometriosis A study has found obesity is linked to severe endometriosis, rejecting the idea the disease only affects 'skinny' women.Obese women are more likely to have severe, a misunderstood condition that impacts one-in-10 women, an Australian study has found

One seminal study in this area compared 504 healthy women and 504 women with endometriosis , finding that women who ate beef every day This also occurs if you're overweight, and you're more likely to be overweight if you follow a diet high Bump up the veggies and fruit in unexpected places.

Infertility is a known symptom of endometriosis with many women with endometriosis finding it difficult to get pregnant. It also appears that the more severe the woman ’s endometriosis , the more likely it is that she will have difficulty becoming pregnant.

Professor Jason Abbott from UNSW.© Endometriosis Australia Professor Jason Abbott from UNSW. As Jessica Panetta describes her daily battle with chronic pain, she pauses, and then takes a few short breaths. She apologises, explaining that sometimes it hurts to breathe.

Ms Panetta, 32 from Melbourne, is one of the estimated 700,000 Australian women with endometriosis, a little understood disease in which tissue, similar to what normally lines the uterus, grows in other parts of the body, causing pain.

In her case, it's taken root in her chest cavity and engulfed her diaphragm, not only making it hard for her to breathe, but on her worst days, laugh, sneeze and cry.

There's a new way to measure your risk of obesity

  There's a new way to measure your risk of obesity The Dietary Obesity Prevention Score (DOPS) is based on 14 food groups and can determine your risk.Presenting their findings at the European Congress on Obesity in Vienna, Austria, last week, Clara Gómez-Donoso and colleagues reported a clear and compelling link between scores on the tool and long-term likelihood of becoming overweight or obese.

It is more likely that factors related to infertility, which is more common among the very obese , are linked to the reduced risk of endometriosis . Study suggests women with severe forms of endometriosis are more attractive.

The women also completed a questionnaire about their sexual history, and the results showed that women with severe endometriosis were more likely to have had sexual intercourse before age 18.

"During a flare up, it's like barbed wires are being pulled through my ribs," said Ms Panetta, who wants to work but has been deemed to have total permanent disability. "On a good day, I'm still taking painkillers every four hours."

A new study involving more than 500 Australian women, including Ms Panetta, has found women with a healthy body mass index (BMI) are more likely to have endometriosis, as suspected, but obese women are more likely to have severe forms of it.

With endometriosis, there is no correlation between severity of disease, which is divided into four stages, and intensity of pain.

Jessica Panetta lives with chronic pain caused by endometriosis.© Joe Armao Jessica Panetta lives with chronic pain caused by endometriosis.

The researchers, from the University of Melbourne and the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne, said the results highlighted the "complex interaction" between the disease, BMI and pain.

What nobody tells you about breast cancer: Woman who was diagnosed aged just 20 despite her healthy lifestyle says treatment has forced her body into premature menopause

  What nobody tells you about breast cancer: Woman who was diagnosed aged just 20 despite her healthy lifestyle says treatment has forced her body into premature menopause At age 20, student, Bianca Innes was diagnosed breast cancer after finding a lump when she got out of the shower. She reveals how life has changed and what other young women should know.The then 20-year-old journalism university student was diagnosed with Grade 3, Stage2B triple positive breast cancer after finding a lump in her right breast after a shower.

The women also completed a questionnaire about their sexual history, and the results showed that women with severe endometriosis were more likely to have had sexual intercourse before age 18.

When the researchers looked back at the women 's BMIs when they were 18, they found that women who were morbidly obese at that point in their lives It is more likely that factors related to infertility, which is more common among the very obese , are linked to the reduced risk of endometriosis .

It's been suggested that only "skinny" women get endometriosis, but the study shows the average sufferer has a BMI in the upper healthy range, not "skinny" or underweight.

The study also corroborates the link between endometriosis and metabolism, as earlier research has shown that sufferers are more likely to have high cholesterol.

"The finding [that women who are obese are more likely to have severe disease] is unexpected to a degree because normally women who are obese have higher oestrogen levels, which is usually something that comes across with women who have endometriosis," lead researcher Sarah Holdsworth-Carson said.

"We’re unsure what this means, whether it shows the disease progresses more quickly in obese women, or whether they show fewer symptoms in the earlier stages of the disease and therefore not seeking treatment."

The study involved 509 women of reproductive age who reported pelvic pain and underwent laparoscopic surgery at the Royal Women’s Hospital. Of those, 357 had surgically confirmed endometriosis.

Thinking of taking a weight-loss supplement? Don't

  Thinking of taking a weight-loss supplement? Don't Why fat-burning pills are a waste of money.But those numbers of overweight and obese Australians are rising — so it's also logical that these weight-loss supplements don't actually work.

The team found , as they describe in their paper published in the journal Fertility and Sterility, that women with a severe form of the disorder were far more likely to be seen as attractive than women in the general population. Endometriosis is a condition where cells that are normally only found on the

Endometriosis Risk Factors. As we have mentioned before, any woman who menstruates can develop endometriosis . You are, however, more likely to have this condition if It’s important to know the causes and risk factors so that you can find out where you stand. References [ + ].

The results are some of the first to come from a larger study investigating the genetic drivers of the "tricky" disease.

Endometriosis is under-researched, under-diagnosed and under-recognised, according to the federal government's draft National Action Plan, leading to long delays in diagnosis and therefore treatment.

Dr Holdsworth-Carson said researchers were at the early stages of understanding the disease and desperate for more funding.

Sarah Holdsworth-Carson is an endometriosis researcher at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne.© Supplied Sarah Holdsworth-Carson is an endometriosis researcher at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne.

"We need simple measures that doctors can use ... by calculating their BMI, it’s a simplistic way of providing the phenotype of a patient. There is a need for patient stratification," she said.

"The current staging system is based on what the surgeon sees during surgery and has no correlation with pain symptoms, so that's one of the inadequacies."

A clinical application, she said, was that surgeons needed to be aware of the need to provide more time for surgery in obese women as they were more likely to have extensive endometriosis requiring removal.

'There is no cure': 800,000 Australians suffer 'distressing' condition

  'There is no cure': 800,000 Australians suffer 'distressing' condition "People are always saying 'stop scratching'. You feel like slapping them and saying 'don't bloody well tell me to stop scratching'."It wasn't. But the questions, the pain, the discomfort and the relentless itchiness -  his eczema first appeared as spots on his face nine years ago, spread to his hands and is now all over his body -  meant he'd often stay home.

The study found that obese women had a 39% lower rate of endometriosis compared to women of normal or low weight. It is more likely that factors related to infertility, which is more common among the very obese , are linked to the reduced risk of endometriosis ," says Dr. Divya Shah of the

Third, what would lead some women to develop severe endometriosis , while others none at all? The study found a dose-dependent relationship between dioxin and endometriosis . Animals with more exposure were more likely to develop the disease, and the greater a female monkey's

Professor Jason Abbott, medical director at Endometriosis Australia, said it was too early to say what the findings meant for women with endometriosis, dubbed a "silent epidemic".

"We do know that the cause of endometriosis is about 50 per cent related to your genetics and genes are also important in obesity," he said.

"It may be that the gene that 'turns on' endometriosis has a 'turn off' effect on weight gain. Clearly the more we know around the causes and these links, we may have better answers to a whole variety of diseases and better treatment options for endometriosis."

He encouraged all women to look after their health and weight.

"It is imperative that a general healthy weight range be maintained for the benefits that go well beyond reproductive health and endometriosis. Being in a healthy weight range improves fertility and an exercise program is good for heart, bone and mental health," he said.

"Women with endometriosis who have pain or fertility issues will always benefit from being in a healthy weight range and having good exercise habits."

Ms Panetta, who is a healthy weight and led an active lifestyle before the pain became too extreme, said the findings gave her a "glimmer of hope".

Despite feeling pain since she was 13, she was only diagnosed with endometriosis at 22. She has endured eight surgeries but is still in "agonising" pain.

"I’ve met so many women with so many different cases of endo and they come from so many backgrounds and are all different shapes and sizes, so it’s hard to say what this study means to me," she said.

"On behalf of myself and my endo sisters, we're incredibly thankful for all the researchers trying to help us, because even if it's not a cure, they're trying to find something that can help us manage the pain."

The study - the world’s largest to compare BMI with endometriosis that has been surgically diagnosed - has been published in the latest Journal of Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain Disorders.

Should kids have weight loss surgery? This doctor thinks so .
Debate rages on

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!