Briefly – What is Endometriosis?

Essentially, in endometriosis, the cells of the endometrium, the inner layer of the uterus, escape and grow outside the uterus.

Like their normal counterpart inside the uterus, this displaced endometrium is influenced by hormonal changes, thickening, breaking down and bleeding with each menstrual cycle. As this extra tissue is outside the uterus, it cannot leave the body and becomes trapped. This leads to excessive pain during menstrual periods.

The main symptoms of endometriosis are:

  • Periods – worse than usual pelvic pain and cramping.
  • Intercourse – pain during and after.
  • Bowel movements or urination – more prevalent during periods.
  • Excessive bleeding during periods is also commonly observed.

Treatment options:

  • Pain medication – to help ease menstrual cramps.
  • Hormone modulating medication – ultimate aim to slow/shorten/reduce menstrual periods to reduce endometrium growth.

Up to 50% of women diagnosed with endometriosis patients suffer from infertility. In many cases, endometriosis is diagnosed when they seek professional help for infertility.

If you want to get pregnant, your doctor may recommend:

Surgery – removing as much of the displaced tissue as possible while preserving the uterus and ovaries to increase chances of pregnancy.
Assisted reproductive approaches – technique most commonly used is in vitro fertilization (IVF). This approach can bypass the need for surgery, or taken into consideration if surgery is ineffective.

Recent research informs us that variations in the p53 protein is associated with endometriosis and IVF failure.

P53 is a well known protein with many functions: the most recognized being its ability to prevent cancer.

Recently, the p53 protein was discovered to play an important role in reproductive success. Studies show that p53 protein variation is involved in unexplained multiple miscarriage.

In the context of endometriosis, medical publications reveal that a particular type of p53 variation, called P72R, is associated with women who suffer from endometriosis.

In other words: The p53 P72R variant increases the risk of endometriosis.

But why should you care?

You should care if you have been diagnosed with endometriosis and want to try IVF to get pregnant!

Not only did the study demonstrate that p53 P72R variant is associated with endometriosis, but also observed that the variant reduce the success rate of IVF.

Two independent studies with over 300 participants diagnosed with endometriosis showed that p53 P72R variation reduced the chance of achieving ongoing pregnancy after IVF.

Bottom line: you should consider your p53 status before deciding if IVF is right for you.

How to check? We can help!

At GeneYouIn, we utilize whole exome sequencing technology to look for protein variations in your genetic makeup. Not only will we be able to determine your p53 status, but results from our PregnaSeqTM service will give you a complete picture of your genetic well-being to aid your physician in diagnosing other fertility problems, providing you with both diagnostic and treatment options.

Please visit our blog for more informative content on fertility treatment and testing. If you have further questions, please feel free to call or email us.

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