Endometriosis – non-malignant cancer of the uterus, is one way of describing this condition affecting 15% of women of reproductive age. Endometriosis cells act like cancer cells – growing and attracting their own blood supply. For most women, this condition can be extremely painful at every period and can prevent them from getting pregnant. There are several important factors to consider when treating endometriosis. These are inflammation, autoimmunity, blood vessel formation, estrogen dominance and progesterone resistance.

Even though there are several contributing factors to consider when treating endometriosis, it is fairly easy to implement natural strategies to address all of the underlying issues of this disease. There is also great research to support several natural therapies in the treatment of endometriosis. By implementing the treatments outlined in this article, we are able to help patients experience pain relief, decreased inflammation in the body, regular cycles, and improved fertility outcomes.

As a naturopathic doctor, I treat patients holistically using IV therapy, botanical medicine, acupuncture, bio-identical hormones, and lifestyle and dietary modifications. On top of completing my 4 year medical degree at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, I obtained further certification in IV therapy, acupuncture and prescriptive authority. I regularly see patients with women’s health complaints like endometriosis and attend seminars and conferences to further deepen my knowledge and understanding of these conditions as well as the latest research on integrative treatment options.

1. Pain elimination: using a combined approach of dietary modifications, supplements, and botanical medicine, we are able to effectively reduce the blood supply to endometriotic lesions, thereby reducing their size. Examples of treatments here would include melatonin, green tea extract, resveratrol and curcumin.

2. Decreased inflammation: the same treatments we use for pain elimination also work by reducing inflammation. The greater the reduction in inflammation, the greater benefit the patient experiences with their painful periods.

3. Regular cycles: using comprehensive hormone tests we uncover where the imbalance is. We then treat estrogen dominance and progesterone resistance with therapies like DIM, chrysin and bio-identical hormone replacement therapy.

4. Improved fertility: finally, if a woman is looking to conceive, we implement a protocol to control any possible factor of autoimmunity that could potentially impact the sperm or embryo. As mentioned in the beginning, there is a strong link between autoimmunity and endometriosis, and the autoimmunity factor is the most important to treat in the context of fertility. A large part of this treatment will involve healing the gut and restoring a healthy microbiome or intestinal flora.

Patients in a study who were treated with melatonin experienced a 40% reduction in pain, improved sleep quality, and reduced their need to use pain killers by 80%. Another study looking at the effect of green tea extract found that there was a significant reduction in lesion size and weight in the patients studied. These results speak to the efficacy of natural therapies and the profound impact they can have on the lives of patients with endometriosis.

Recommended treatment regimen involves dietary modifications, supplementation of daily oral nutrients, weekly acupuncture treatments and biweekly IV treatments. Treatment should be followed for 3-6 months minimum in order to see results. Although this can be a financial commitment for some, most patients find that the results are well worth it when their health is a priority. Most extended health plans cover naturopathic medical services as well and we have direct billing available at Yinstill to make things easier for you.

With endometriosis, it is important to initiate treatment sooner rather than later, especially for women trying to conceive, as this can make a world of a difference and determine whether or not you are able to conceive naturally.

I offer free 15 minute phone consults for all prospective patients. To book in, call 604-873-9355 or email office@yinstill.com and our receptionists will be happy to assist you.

I look forward to helping you experience a reduction in pain, decreased inflammation, regular cycles, improved fertility, and witnessing your journey toward optimal health!

Dr. Shilo

References:
1. Angiogenesis. 2013 Jan;16(1):59-69.
2. Fertil Steril. 2011 Oct;96(4):1021-8
3. Pain. 2013 Jun;154(6):874-81

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