March is Endometriosis Awareness Month with a mission to raise awareness of a disease which affects an estimated 176 million women worldwide. Thirty to forty five percent of women with infertility can pinpoint endometriosis as a factor. Endometriosis is an often painful disorder in which tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus — the endometrium — grows outside of the uterus (endometrial implant). Endometriosis most commonly involves ovaries, bowel or the tissue lining of the pelvis.
While endometriosis and infertility often coincide, there are treatments available for patients that would like to start a family. Dr. Stephanie Singleton of The Fertility Center of Charleston explains, “The Fertility Center of Charleston will assess each patient who might suffer from endometriosis and formulate an individualized fertility treatment plan.” Some patients with endometriosis may increase their chances of pregnancy with conservative methods such as ovulation induction and intrauterine insemination, however, many women with endometriosis benefit from in vitro fertilization therapy. When fertility drugs are combined with in vitro fertilization/embryo transfer (IVF/ET) procedures, pregnancy rates are even higher than with ovulation induction and intrauterine insemination.
Dr. Singleton often treats patients in Charleston and Savannah that suffer from endometriosis and infertility. Dr. Singleton recently helped a Charleston endometriosis patient who shared her experience on Fertility IQ, “Dr. Singleton sent me for a GI consult and during surgery it was discovered my endometriosis was eating through my colon. Had this not been discovered there is no telling what would have happened.” Endometriosis can damage the ovaries and decrease the ability to produce good quality eggs at an earlier age than normal, because of this egg freezing a possibility for endometriosis patients to consider. Dr. Singleton explains, “Women with rapidly progressing endometriosis who are not in a position to begin their families may benefit from cryopreservation of eggs for future fertilization and pregnancy.”
An endometriosis patient recently shared her experience with The Fertility Center of Charleston, “While I am only focusing on getting pregnant, Dr. Singleton makes sure to focus on keeping me healthy and that is important. In addition to being thorough and honest, she is also very compassionate which helps a lot when dealing with infertility.” At The Fertility Center of Charleston, Dr. Stephanie Singleton and her staff compassionately guide each patient to parenthood using the latest advanced reproductive technologies including IVF. The Fertility Center of Charleston has locations in Mt. Pleasant & Savannah.
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