A DOCTOR has revealed the unusual reason why you could be suffering with agonising period pains.
The pressure of these swollen veins in the abdomen can produce similar aches and pains, but is very difficult to properly diagnose.
It’s called Pelvic Congestion Syndrome (PCS), and affects between 500,000 per 1.5 million women in the UK.
Professor Mark Whiteley, Consultant Venous Surgeon and founder of the Whiteley Clinic, told the Sun Online: “PCS is a medical condition caused by pressure from swollen internal varicose veins that are not visible on the skin’s surface around the pelvis and lower abdomen.
“If the valves in the pelvis fail, the blood that should be pumped out of the pelvis and back to the heart lingers inside the dilated varicose veins.
“These large varicose veins then push on the bladder, bowel, vaginal, and pelvic floor, interrupting normal blood circulation to the pelvic organs.
“As these veins lie deep within the pelvis, they can only be examined by specialist
I più letti in Salute
sono un dott & ecco 5 sintomi della bandiera rossa del mal di testa che significano che hai bisogno di assistenza medica
“It is often said that PCS only occurs in fertile women who have had at least one pregnancy; tuttavia, our latest research shows 10 per cent of our patients with PCS who have never been pregnant – and 25 per cent are post-menopausal.”
Signs and symptoms include long-term chronic pain – this is usually described as a dragging sensation or a chronic ache in the pelvic, which is exacerbated by standing and sitting.
Prof Whiteley added: “In some cases, the pain may also turn into a sharp stabbing sensation.
“Some women will also experience an irritable bladder and bowel, because of the weight the swollen pelvic veins are putting pressure on the bladder and rectum.
“Women suffering with PCS are also prone to painful menstruation and usually experience heavy discomfort during or following sexual intercourse, and subsequent pregnancies.”
If you think you may have the condition raise it with your doctor, and ask to speak to a specialist.
Many of the symptoms are varied and make a diagnosis difficult, with many GPs not knowing the signs or what to look for.
Prof Whiteley said: “I would recommend having a transvaginal duplex ultrasound if you are concerned that you have PCS.
“Pelvic congestion syndrome can be cured now in the majority of patients, [object Window], if we get an accurate diagnosis, we can treat this before the condition worsens using Pelvic Vein Embolisation.”
This is an x-ray technique where very thin catheters are inserted into the veins that need treating.
Once they are in place a metal coil is inserted, which closes the vein and stops the pelvic vein reflux.