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Tall Women are much Likely to get Diagnosed with Endometriosis

A new study suggests that tall and lean women are more likely to get diagnosed with endometriosis. The study covered 66 years of 170,000 girls’ lives and tracked their health status between 1930 and 1996 with a follow-up study in 1977.

The study findings are published in the journal Annals of Human Biology.

The results indicated that women who had high BMI  and short height in their childhood were at extremely low risk of endometriosis than those who had low BMI and tall height. The lead author of this study, Julie Aarestrup, from the Center for Clinical Research and Prevention, Denmark says that these findings show that the risk can be reduced at an early age. It means that early treatment is possible which can slow down the growth of endometrial tissue in young girls.

This experiment was ended for every participant when she was diagnosed with any stage of endometriosis, till June 2017. The overall results suggest that thin and tall females are at more risk of this condition.

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But Dr. Valerie A. Flores, from the Yale School of Medicine, has a different theory. She suggests that this relation of height and weight and endometriosis growth is not as simple as it looks. She also called it a “common misconception” which has been around for years.

Being lean and tall in childhood doesn’t mean that a girl is going to end up with endometriosis. It is a complex, systematic condition and bridging it to these two factors is not the best way to explain it. Generally, in medical literature, women diagnosed with endometriosis are explained to be lean and thin she says but it just predisposes a girl to endometriosis.

Endometriosis is one of the most common gynecological conditions that affects 200 million women globally. Ever 1 in 10 women in the USA alone is suffering from endometriosis

Common symptoms of endometriosis include heavy and painful periods, nausea, fatigue, restlessness, painful intercourse, and digestive problems. There is no specific reason behind why it happens, also there is no absolute treatment for it available. For some women, it may take years to show symptoms and eventually a diagnosis.

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Medical experts believe that the standard approaches for treating endometriosis are not completely effective and are problematic. One of the major reasons behind it is inadequate research on understanding the disease, its progression and its inability to find control. All this leads to developing a limited understanding of the disease, pain and treatment options by most obstetrician-gynecologists.

Furthermore, only a few medical experts are actually trained for treating endometriosis with surgery. Considering a large number of patients and few qualified surgeons, patients may have to wait for years to get their surgery done.

That is why studies like these are helpful to know the risk factors and indicators of endometriosis in women. However, identifying a biomarker for this disease through a test would be best to prevent the worsening of the condition. Unfortunately, these phenotypic factors like height and BMI are not enough to be clinically helpful.

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Areeba Hussain

The author is a fulltime medical and healthcare writer. She graduated in Medical Microbiology and Immunology with distinction. Her areas of prime interest are medicine, medical technology, disease awareness, and research analysis. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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