Skip main navigation

Military Health System

Clear Your Browser Cache

This website has recently undergone changes. Users finding unexpected concerns may care to clear their browser's cache to ensure a seamless experience.

Female service members stand on the flightline for Women's History Month at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, March 19, 2021. The service members participated in the Air Force's two-week advanced aerial combat training exercise, Red Flag. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Natalie Rubenak)
Skip subpage navigation


Endometriosis is a common problem for some people. Endometriosis is when the tissue that normally lines the Click to closeuterusAlso known as the womb, the uterus is the female reproductive organ where a baby grows. uterus grows elsewhere in the body. It can happen to anyone who has a period. This problem is more common in women in their 30s and 40s.

This "misplaced" tissue can cause:

  • Pain
  • Heavy periods
  • Infertility

The pain is usually in the:

  • Abdomen
  • Lower back
  • Pelvic areas

There may not be any symptoms at all. Difficulty getting pregnant may be the first sign of endometriosis.

Lower Your Risk

Endometriosis can’t be prevented. You can reduce your chances of getting it by lowering the Click to closeestrogenAny of a group of steroid hormones which promote the development and maintenance of female characteristics of the body. Such hormones are also produced artificially for use in oral contraceptives or to treat menopausal and menstrual disorders.estrogen levels in your body. Some ways to reduce estrogen include:

  • Using hormone birth control like:
    • Pills
    • Patches
    • Rings with lower doses of estrogen
  • Exercising regularly — this means more than four hours per week
  • Limiting alcohol
  • Limiting caffeinated drinks

Signs & Symptoms

Common signs and symptoms may include:

  • Painful period cramps.
  • Chronic lower back and pelvic pain.
  • Pain during or after sex.
  • Intestinal pain.
  • Painful urination or bowel movements.

Other symptoms include:

  • Bleeding or spotting between periods.
  • Infertility.
  • Digestive problems.

If you have symptoms of endometriosis, talk to your provider about diagnosis and treatment options.

Last Updated: August 08, 2023
Follow us on Instagram Follow us on LinkedIn Follow us on Facebook Follow us on X Follow us on YouTube Sign up on GovDelivery