So I'm at (almost) the start of my journey through endo treatment and I'm looking for some advice from those who have had treatment already.
I don't know how bad the endo is, but my GP and gynae are pretty convinced that's my problem. I get excruciating pain on ovulation and menstruation. I can pin-point where my ovary is at these times and it burns all around that area. I've had scans and tests, revealing I have PCOS but nothing that would account for the pain (I know endo doesn't show on these things). I've suffered with this since I was about 12 (I'm 31 now). I had a mirena which took all my symptoms away (5 years pain free, but 3 years of depression) until I wanted more children. I've now got 3 gorgeous kids (13, 3 and 1) and feel very lucky to have only had minimal difficulty in getting them (natural conception). The endo was bad in between pregnancies, but I wasn't prepared to have treatment that could harm my children. Now my family is complete I really need to get this dealt with. My last baby stopped breastfeeding 2 months ago and the endo pain has come back with a vengeance. I've had no surgery so far, and other than the mirena, no hormonal treatments. I've been following the endo diet since January and while it has helped me lose weight and feel healthier (bloating is no problem at all now), and I think it has helped reduce some of the pain, I'm still in more than I can manage for about 2 weeks every month.
My question is this: what would you have done differently if you had the chance to start your treatment again? I've read that having surgery is the only way to diagnose the extent (and indeed existence) of endo, and the drs are keen to get me to have a diagnostic lap so that they know what they are dealing with. My symptoms suggest my right ovary is the worst affected, with possible issues around my right hip-flex area and bowel. However, I also know that surgery can cause scar tissue and adhesions, potentially making the problem worse. Even if surgery is successful, I understand that most women find the benefits of laps wears off in around 2 years, meaning it has to be done again.
If you've had a lap, did it work? Or do you wish you had never had that first surgery? Another Mirena seems like the least invasive way to go, but I'm not prepared to deal with depression again. I want my life back, not just a different set of symptoms. The dr says that pretty much discounts any of the hormonal treatments that induce/mimic menopause as that will almost certainly spark depression if I'm prone to it. Am I better off avoiding surgery all together and just taking stronger pain killers?
I'm so conflicted about this and feeling really drained by it all. The fatigue knocks me out, the dose of cocodamol (60/1000) that takes the pain away makes me drowsy and I'm so tired of being in pain.
Your experiences would be most welcome.