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Overview - Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition where tissue similar to the lining of the womb starts to grow in other places. For example, the ovaries, the lining of the tummy and fallopian tubes.

Endometriosis can affect women of any age, although it is less likely in women after menopause. It is also less likely in girls in the early years after their first period.

It is a long-term condition that can impact people on different levels. Some women can continue to lead a normal life. But for others, endometriosis can have a significant impact on their quality of life. There are treatments available that can help.

Symptoms of endometriosis

The symptoms of endometriosis can vary. Some women will have very noticeable symptoms, while others may not have any noticeable symptoms.

Symptoms of endometriosis

When to see a GP

Talk to your GP if you have symptoms of endometriosis, especially if they are severe. If you delay getting help, it can make treatment less effective.

Write down your symptoms before seeing your GP.

Diagnosis for endometriosis

Causes of endometriosis

The cause of endometriosis is not known. Several theories have been suggested.

Causes of endometriosis

Treatment for endometriosis

There's currently no cure for endometriosis. But there are treatments that can help ease the symptoms and reduce the progression of the disease.

Treatment for endometriosis

Living with endometriosis

Endometriosis can be a difficult condition to deal with, both physically and emotionally.

Get help early and discuss any period-related symptoms with your GP.

Living with endometriosis

Content supplied by the NHS and adapted for Ireland by the HSE

Page last reviewed: 3 March 2023
Next review due: 3 March 2026

This project has received funding from the Government of Ireland’s Sláintecare Integration Fund 2019 under Grant Agreement Number 123.