Women’s reproductive health is an important topic considering that 13% of women in the United States are considered in poor health. While reproductive health is only a component of women, it’s extremely important.
But what are some common reproductive health issues that strike women? How common are they and when should you be concerned?
If you’re unsure about what is normal or not normal in your body, read on to discover the most prevalent reproductive health issues that plague women today.
Endometriosis is a condition in which the lining of the uterus grows in other places in the body. It’s extremely painful, normally having pain in the abdomen and pelvis.
The first signs of endometriosis are not always clear, but an inability to conceive after a long period of time is one of them. Heavy periods are also another sign.
Gynecological cancers are cancers related to women’s reproductive systems. These types of cancers include vaginal, cervical, uterine, vulva, ovarian, which are all components of a women’s reproductive system.
Cervical cancer is the most common type of cancer that occurs in younger women. Screenings called pap smears can help with early detection and treatment. All other reproductive cancers typically occur in women 50 years of age or older.
The uterus is a part of the reproductive system that nourishes an embryo when a woman becomes pregnant. If pregnancy does not occur, the uterine lining sheds which is called menstruation.
Uterine fibroids are tumors that grow inside or around the uterus. They’re usually benign, but painful nevertheless, with pain in the abdomen and lower back. Women with uterine fibroids may also experience infertility and painful sexual intercourse.
Surgery is often considered for their removal or non-invasive solutions like the ones from Pivotal Health.
HIV is short for human immunodeficiency virus, which over time can lead to AIDS, or acquired immune deficiency syndrome. HIV is a life-long virus with no cure but can be managed with treatments. Women acquire HIV through sexual intercourse with someone who is HIV-positive or through the sharing of needles.
HIV is specifically concerning when it comes to women who are pregnant because they have a chance of transmitting it to their baby. There are now ways to possibly prevent unborn babies from contracting HIV in utero, so it’s important to speak with your doctor if you’re pregnant and HIV positive.
Polycystic Ovarian System
A women’s body normally produces estrogen and a small amount of the male hormone, progesterone. Polycystic Ovarian System or POS is when a woman’s body overproduces male hormones, most likely due to cysts on the ovaries.
POS can lead to things like infertility, hair growth or loss, pain, and even acne or oily skin. There’s no cure for POS, but it can be managed with medications and lifestyle changes.
Women’s Reproductive Health
The reproductive health of women is a concern for women everywhere. Learning to take care of your body, seeing your OB/GYN regularly, and paying attention to changes in your body can all aid you in early detection and treatment.
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