| chronic pain

Explaining Endometriosis

Patients/Providers on the Same Page

Endometriosis. The statistics are awful: globally it affects around 10% of girls/women—that's 190,000,000 people! Many women suffer for years, partly due to a lack of communication. What might help? Better dialogue between patient and practitioner. A study out of England, reported in Frontiers in Global Women’s Health, looked at discussion difficulties between patients and doctors, and explored ways to improve communication. Via surveys and telephone interviews with practitioners and 131 women with endometriosis, it was discovered that both groups found descriptions of pain more helpful than a Numeric Rating Scale, which they found too limiting.

The study concluded, “The use of metaphors can improve practitioner-patient communication…and help patients interpret, accept and adapt to pain as a coping mechanism. Therefore, further investigation is needed into the effective use of metaphor to enhance patient-practitioner communication of endometriosis related pain in general practice care as well as into improving GPs' understandings of common metaphors employed by women living with the condition.” It can take over 9 years for a women to finally receive an endometriosis diagnosis. The earlier the diagnosis, the better the pain treatment and improved quality of life.


Read the journal article.