A few months ago I was diagnosed with Adenomyosis, it was both a shock and a relief especially as I have been suffering for years with heavy, painful periods and other pretty awful symptoms. Last summer I was really ill, I could hardly walk with the heavy feeling in my tummy, extreme pain, feeling sick, tired and horrendous bleeding. I had to start wearing large incontinence pads and changing them every couple of hours. After contacting my GP and explaining how I had been feeling she said that she would refer me for an ultrasound scan.
I got my appointment quite quickly and although I didn’t get my result straight away I only had to wait a couple of days before the GP phoned me with the result. I think I was incredibly lucky as some women I know have had to wait months and months for their appointment.
Although she couldn’t give a definitive diagnosis she said it was suspected I had adenomyosis, a condition where the inner lining of the uterus (endometrial tissue) grows into the muscular wall of the uterus, she said that an appointment would be made with a gynaecologist to give me a call to discuss the diagnosis and treatment but not to worry as it is not cancerous and in the meantime she would prescribe me anti inflammatory and strong pain killers.
Tranexamic Acid (anti inflammatory) was prescribed although it did ease the blood flow I felt incredibly sick and dizzy, for pain I was prescribed co codamol which really helped with the pain, I still felt bloated, had a tender tummy and pain in my pubic area as well as bleeding it did begin to get a bit better.
When the gynaecologist called he confirmed that I had adenomyosis and suggested I have the marina coil fitted which would help with the bleeding and feeling poorly. Having had a coil fitted many years ago which apparently hadn’t been put in properly and caused me a lot of discomfort and pain I was really apprehensive. I done a bit of research and spoke to my GP about my concerns who reassured me that she was extremely experienced in fitting coils and that it really would make a difference so decided to go ahead, I mean, I had nothing to lose, I had been feeling really ill for so long I needed to try something.
The day came and I popped along to the surgery, obviously feeling nervous but hopeful. Laying on the bed the nurse reassured me that the GP was wonderful and has fitted thousands of coils so try not to worry. Legs akimbo a clear plastic speculum was inserted (after being lubricated), I had been bleeding over the past few days and had told the nurse who assured me that was fine, I was thinking to myself as I lay there that it will probably help putting the speculum in so was pretty confident that bit would be ok. I had been told I had a tilted cervix so when she started to struggle to see my cervix I wasn’t surprised, moving the device around to try to get a good view. After a few moments she gave up and said she would have to get a longer one, blimey I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry! She had much more success with the big one, they say it’s not the size that’s important, it’s what you do with it and I can confirm that in my case the size made a huge difference.
Having the coil fitted was uncomfortable and painful for a few seconds but once it was in, it was fine. I was told that it would take a while to settle in so bear with it, if it seems like it’s not making any difference then be patient as it can take up to 6 months for me to begin to feel a bit better. I would need to have a repeat prescription of painkillers but to stop the anti inflammatory tablets gradually so that my body can do it’s thing and get better naturally.
There is no cure for adenomyosis and it doesn’t just go away, you have to live with it, it does however get better for those of us who are going through the menopause so for me, there is light at the end of the tunnel, after having such horrendous blood loss and pain for years anything to ease that would be an improvement.
Two months down the line and I am still taking the painkillers as I am getting some pain still, I am also spotting daily but it is manageable, I have gone from industrial size incontinence pads to panty liners so that it a massive difference, I do feel like crap some days, bloated and constipated but on the whole having the marina coil was a game changer for me. It doesn’t work for everyone so if you do try it and you absolutely hate it then you do have the right to have it removed. Hysterectomy is a last resort and personally it wasn’t something I wanted but it is a conversation you need to have with you GP as every situation is different. I would suggest joining a specific adenomyosis group on Facebook as it has loads of information and experiences of adenomyosis so you don’t feel alone and you can find out what options there may be out there for you.
Ademomyosis Fighters is a really good place to start https://www.facebook.com/adenomyosisfighters