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Endometriosis Often Ignored in Teenage Girls

Severe endometriosis is a hormone and immune system disease (in which uterine tissue is found outside the uterus, causing lesions in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, abdominal lining, bowel or bladder) that can cause inflammation and debilitating pain.

According to the Endometriosis Association, a research and advocacy group, it is estimated that 89 million women worldwide, including 6.5 million in the United States and Canada, have symptoms of  endometriosis. These symptoms which include debilitating periods, painful bowel movements with menstruation, inflammation, internal bleeding, scar tissue and infertility.

“But those numbers are rough, experts say, because many young girls with endo, as it is called, do not find out until years later. In fact, research from the Endometriosis Association estimates that it can take up to 10 years from the onset of pain for a doctor to give a diagnosis of endometriosis, largely because many physicians do not believe the disease affects teenagers. By that time, the damage has been done.”

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