Strong period pain and excess weight in childhood increases risk of endometriosis

March 11, 2010, Research Australia

Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR) scientists have identified a new link between strong period pain experienced in adolescence and early adulthood and the risk of endometriosis.

Researchers from QIMR's Gynaecological Cancer Laboratory have found having strong period pain often at an early age doubles a woman's risk of developing endometriosis.

The study also found that girls starting their menstrual cycle after 14 years old had a significantly decreased risk of endometriosis.

Researchers analysed information from more than 500 Australian women - making this one of the largest studies of its kind. Information about early menstrual characteristics in women with moderate to severe endometriosis was compared to data from women who had not been diagnosed with endometriosis.

"Although the relationship between menstrual characteristics and endometriosis has been studied extensively, most research has focused on the recent characteristics of women with the disease. Our research is one of the first studies to look at the factors contributing to the development of endometriosis long before symptoms and diagnosis occur," said Dr Christina Nagle from QIMR.

In a related study last year, Dr Nagle and her team found that being overweight at 10 years of age also doubles the risk of developing endometriosis in later life.

"Our research aims to better understand the signs and symptoms before the disease develops and to help identify women at higher risk. Early intervention will result in better health outcomes for women with this condition."

To date, there is no known cause or cure for , which affects 10% of women, causing and reduced fertility, in many cases. Disease symptoms can be managed through , hormone treatment or surgery, or a combination of each.

More information: The article was published online on 21 December 2009 on the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology website. (dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2009.10.857)

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Building better tiny kidneys to test drugs and help people avoid dialysis

February 16, 2018
A free online kidney atlas built by USC researchers empowers stem cell scientists everywhere to generate more human-like tiny kidneys for testing new drugs and creating renal replacement therapies.

Expanding Hepatitis C testing to all adults is cost-effective and improves outcomes

February 16, 2018
According to a new study, screening all adults for hepatitis C (HCV) is a cost-effective way to improve clinical outcomes of HCV and identify more infected people compared to current recommendations. Using a simulation model, ...

Study suggests expanded range for emerging tick-borne disease

February 16, 2018
Human cases of Borrelia miyamotoi, a tick-borne infection with some similarities to Lyme disease, were discovered in the eastern United States less than a decade ago. Now new research led by the Yale School of Public Health ...

Flu shot only 36 percent effective, making bad year worse (Update)

February 15, 2018
The flu vaccine is doing a poor job protecting older Americans and others against the bug that's causing most illnesses.

IFN-mediated immunity to influenza A virus infection influenced by RIPK3 protein

February 15, 2018
Each year, influenza kills half a million people globally with the elderly and very young most often the victims. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 37 children have died in the United States ...

A new class of drug to treat herpes simplex virus-1 infection

February 14, 2018
For patients with the herpes simplex-1 virus (HSV-1), there are just a handful of drugs available to treat the painful condition that can affect the eyes, mouth and genitals.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.