What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a painful condition that causes tissue that normally grows inside the uterus to grow on its outside.
This tissue is called “endometrium,” which is why the disorder is called “endometriosis.”
Endometriosis usually affects not just your uterus, but your fallopian tubes, ovaries, and the tissue lining your pelvis.
In some rare cases, this disease may spread to other organs, as well.
Even though this abnormal endometrial tissue grows on the outside of your organs, it acts the same as normal endometrial tissue.
It undergoes menstrual cycles, and bleeds during each one. Since this fluid cannot exit your body, it may cause serious problems.
Symptoms of Endometriosis
The most common symptom of endometriosis is pain.
Even though this symptom is common during menstrual cycles, women who have endometriosis experience much more intense pain than usual.
Other symptoms include:
- Excessive bleeding. Heavy bleeding during or between periods.
- Painful periods. Pelvic pain before, during, and after your period. This can also include abdominal and lower back pain.
- Pain during intercourse.
- Pain that accompanies bowel movements or urination. Usually occurs during one’s period.
- Other symptoms. Diarrhea, fatigue, bloating, constipation, and nausea.
Causes of Endometriosis
Unfortunately, the exact cause of endometriosis is hard to pinpoint.
However, some possible explanations include:
- Immune system disorder.
- Endometrial cells transport.
- Surgical scar implantation.
- Embryonic cell transformation.
- Transformation of peritoneal cells.
- Retrograde menstruation.
Treatment of Endometriosis
Depending on how severe the disease is, the treatment usually consists of medication or surgery.
Typically, conservative approaches are tried first, and if these don’t work, the doctor might resort to surgery.
The types of therapy include:
- Pain medication.
- Hormone therapy.
- Fertility treatment.
- Conservative surgery for endometriosis.
- Complete hysterectomy, with removal of the ovaries.
In addition, according to numerous studies, PEMF treatment also shows a lot of promise for treatment of endometriosis.
Let’s learn more about this therapy, and find out how it works.
PEMF and Endometriosis
PEMF is not a new form of treatment; unfortunately, however, not many people know about it.
But it’s encouraging that more and more studies are proving its positive effects on endometriosis, as well as numerous other diseases.
Medical specialists are increasingly recognizing the power of PEMF, and prescribing this therapy to their patients.
There’s a simple reason why PEMF is so effective in the treatment of symptoms of endometriosis.
It has been determined that the pain which patients with endometriosis experience is caused by swelling and inflammation, which appears because of the abnormal endometrial cells.
One of PEMF’s most well-known health benefits is precisely the reduction of inflammation and swelling throughout the body.
Moreover, PEMF can reduce pain, whether caused by injuries or a variety of pathologies.
In the case of hysterectomy, PEMF can accelerate wound healing, and help patients recover more quickly from this complicated surgery.
PEMF can help not only with endometriosis, but with regular problematic menstrual cycles.
Women who experience menstrual cramping, migraines, or water retention can use PEMF therapy to alleviate these symptoms.
The Treatment Procedure
Typically, in the beginning, thirty minutes of low-frequency PEMF stimulation is enough.
As time goes by, the frequency may be increased gradually.
This setting is specific for every patient, so a comfortable one should be determined.
For treatment of menstrual and pelvic pain, the stimulation should be administered to the pelvic area first, then the lower back area, then the abdomen, and finally to both legs.
If you’re experiencing migraines, you can administer PEMF stimulation both to your feet and to your head.
Either of these approaches has shown positive effects in reducing headache intensity.
Read on to find out even more about PEMF therapy for endometriosis, as described by several studies proving its health benefits.
Before we continue, we need to explain that some of the studies we list are based on PEMF.
Unfortunately, there is just one study where PEMF was used directly, but we hope there will be more in the future.
Due to this fact, we include direct current stimulation studies, as these are very similar to PEMF, and provide all of the same health benefits in treating gynecological problems.
PEMF and Endometriosis Pelvic Pain Therapy
A study completed at the International Pain Research Institute in Los Angeles, named Electrochemical therapy of pelvic pain: effects of pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMF) on tissue trauma (1), shows evidence of long-lasting gynecological pain relief.
Seventeen patients with pelvic pain participated in the study.
They were regularly exposed to short and sharp magnetic pulses generated by a magnetic induction device.
The amplitude used was minimal, with the aim of causing electroporation on a focal area of 25 cm2.
The treatments were short and fast-acting, and in most of these cases obviated surgery.
In addition to endometriosis, the patients in the study also suffered from conditions such as ruptured ovarian cyst, dysmenorrhea, urinary tract infections, postoperative hematoma, and others.
During the study, the 17 patients who participated in it experienced 20 episodes of pelvic pain (11 acute, 7 chronic, and 2 both acute and chronic).
Fifteen of these patients, who experienced 18 of the 20 total episodes (90%), reported significant or even complete relief from pelvic pain.
The remaining two patients reported notable, yet less than complete, relief.
Therefore, the scientists concluded that PEMF therapy can be used both to relieve pain and aid in treatment of gynecological health problems.
Electroacupuncture and Dysmenorrhea
A study conducted in Australia examined the effects of electroacupuncture, and its combination with Tao Hong Si Wu Wan on the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea.
The study was named Effects of electroacupuncture, and electroacupuncture plus Tao Hong Si Wu Wan in treating primary dysmenorrhea (2), and its results were compared to those from conventional medical procedures.
Three groups of patients participated in the study.
The first group received 2,625 mg of Tao Hong Si Wu Wan, whereas the second group received the same amount of placebo, over a period of three months.
Electroacupuncture was administered to both groups.
The participants received two therapies during each menstrual cycle, over three consecutive cycles.
The third group, the control group, was given 600 mg of ibuprofen, twice daily, during five menstrual cycles. This was a blinded study.
After the assessments, the results showed that the first two groups responded much better to the therapy, both immediately and three months after the treatment.
Twelve months after the treatment, group 1 showed much higher results than group 2.
In comparison to group 3, groups 1 and 2 achieved much better results during all stages of treatment and assessment.
Electrical Nerve Stimulation Study
The study named Effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on the postpartum dyspareunia treatment (3) was conducted in Italy, in 2011, to evaluate the safety and viability of this therapy.
The study focused on the application of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) therapy (which is very similar to PEMF) for dyspareunia and vulvar pain after giving birth.
The symptoms started after episiotomy.
For two years, between 2007 and 2009, a total of 45 women suffering from postpartum dyspareunia received weekly sessions of intravaginal TENS/PEMF, and performed daily pelvic floor exercises and myofascial stretching at home.
The results of the study were assessed using the Visual Analogue Scale, the Marinoff Dyspareunia Scale, and the cotton swab test.
Further, the anovulvar distance was checked both before and after the treatment.
Of the 45 participants in the study, 84.5% reported a significant improvement of dyspareunia after the first five sessions.
Of that 84.5 %, complete remission was observed in 95% of the participants.
Eight months after the completion of the study, none of the patients reported any pelvic pain.
Therefore, we can conclude that TENS/PEMF therapy, coupled with pelvic floor exercises, is a safe and effective form of treatment for postpartum dyspareunia.
Percutaneous Tibial Nerve Stimulation Study
A study named Effects of percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation therapy on chronic pelvic pain (4) was conducted to examine the link between percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation and chronic pelvic pain.
The study focused on whether this therapy could improve the quality of sex life, and of life in general, of patients with CPP.
Two groups were included in the study – an experimental, and a control, group.
Each of the two groups consisted of 12 patients.
The first group received 12 sessions of PTNS (once a week), while the second group received routine therapy.
The results showed that the pain intensity reported in the first group was significantly lower than that in the second group.
The first group also reported much less pain during sexual intercourse.
Thus, the scientists who conducted the study concluded that PTNS is a powerful form of therapy for chronic pelvic pain.
In the study, it significantly improved the quality of life of patients suffering from CPP, and allowed them to complete their daily tasks with more ease.
Therefore, if you’re suffering from chronic pelvic, or any other form of pelvic, pain, PEMF therapy could significantly help you.
Noninvasive Electroacupuncture and Dysmenorrhea
Another study that evaluated the effects of electroacupuncture on dysmenorrhea has been included on this list, as, similarly to PEMF, it also uses electromagnetic currents to achieve its benefits.
The study was named Effects of noninvasive electroacupuncture at Hegu (LI4), and Sanyinjiao (SP6) acupoints on dysmenorrhea: a randomized controlled trial (5), and was conducted in 2014.
The study included 66 gynecology patients who suffered from primary dysmenorrhea.
This means that the disease was not caused by another gynecological problem.
The patients were split into two groups: The active group (34), and the control group (32).
The assessment was done using both a numerical scale for pain evaluation, and the McGill Questionnaire.
Mid-frequency transcutaneous electroacupuncture stimulation was applied to the LI4 and SP6 points.
Both groups received electroacupuncture stimulation two times a week for 8 weeks.
However, the control group received stimulation on nonacupoints.
Before the therapy, the two groups showed no significant difference in evaluation of pain.
However, after the study was completed, the first group reported much lower pain intensity, compared to the control group.
The difference in pain intensity between the two groups was already observable during the treatment.
Thus, the scientists concluded that electroacupuncture is a viable treatment for the symptoms of primary dysmenorrhea.
We also know that PEMF, since it uses similar technology, can likewise be a powerful treatment for this gynecological disease.
Chronic Pelvic Pain and Electrotherapy
So far, we’ve seen plenty of evidence that proves electrotherapy (almost the same technology PEMF uses) is a treatment option that should not be overlooked in cases of chronic pelvic pain and other gynecological afflictions.
This study is called Chronic pelvic pain syndrome: neurostimulation, neuromodulation and acupuncture (6), and as you can see, it evaluates the effects of three treatment methods.
The study was conducted at the University of Zurich in 2012, by three renowned scientists specializing in electrotherapy.
After years of research and the evaluation of numerous studies, they have come to an important conclusion.
They’ve realized that unconventional treatments, such as neuromodulation, neurostimulation, and electroacupuncture, are a highly successful way of treating chronic pelvic pain issues.
They go on to say that these promising techniques should be prescribed and used more often by doctors in their daily clinical practice.
Since PEMF is also derived from electromagnetic technology, it should also be considered more as an option for gynecological and chronic pelvic pain problems.
Unfortunately, many women experience gynecological conditions, including endometriosis and chronic pelvic pain.
Thus far, modern medicine has still not provided a cure for these diseases.
Conventional treatment typically offers medicine-oriented solutions, which can be harmful, or undergoing complicated and risky surgical procedures, which can be deadly.
On the other hand, as you can see from the studies we’ve analyzed in this article, PEMF therapy is a completely safe and noninvasive treatment for endometriosis and other gynecological disorders.
It can be freely used by patients of all ages and conditions, both for treatment and prevention of illness.
Since this therapy has no known side effects, it can be used for long periods without any risks.
Richard Hoover is a PEMF expert and content contributor to PEMF Advisor. With a bachelor’s degree in physics and multiple certifications in natural health programs, he is one of the best PEMF experts around.