Uterus Health: An Essential Guide
19 Apr 2022
uterus pcos pelvic pain

The uterus is a crucial organ for female reproductive health. It initiates and regulates menstruation. It also plays a key function in the reproductive process itself. Yet, there remain certain misconceptions and points of misinformation about the organ.

The Structure of the Uterus

The uterus, located right above the vagina, is composed of two parts – the body and the cervix.  The body of sits in the middle of your pelvis, between your bladder and rectum. It is the actual place where the foetus is situated during pregnancy. The cervix is in the lower part of the uterus, extending into the vagina, and allows the baby to pass during childbirth. The uterus also consists of layers of cells that make up its ‘walls’. These are called endometrium, myometrium, and perimetrium. They serve as both a protective layer and also provide cushioning and support to the reproductive organs.

Anteverted and Retroverted Uterus, and Uterine Tilts

If the body of the uterus points upward toward the bladder, the uterus is ‘anteverted’. But if the body points back, it is ‘retroverted’. Sometimes a doctor might tell you that your uterus is ‘tilted’, but there’s no reason to be alarmed by that. Uterine “tilts” are actually common. The position of the uterus doesn’t affect fertility at all.

Menstruation

The uterus is key both the process of menstruation and conception, as it stimulates ovulation. But each uterus goes about it differently. There are many myths around menstruation. The biggest is, that the colour of your menstrual blood has anything to do with the health of your uterus. Menstrual blood varies in colour and texture because they’re just segments of your uterine wall that are shed. The patterns of blood flow, too, are not entirely linked with whether or not your uterus is healthy. That depends on the severity of each cycle.

Endometriosis

The Endometrium is the innermost layer of the uterus. Sometimes, when endometrium-like tissue is found outside the uterus rather than inside it, it gives rise to a rare condition called ‘endometriosis’. In this case, the tissue gets “trapped” in the pelvic area and lower abdomen, and leads to a lot of pain.

There is no clear way to prevent or cure such a disease.

Uterine Cancer

Cancer of the uterus is a surprisingly common and harmful condition, one that is, in some cases curable, but in some cases, gravely serious. When cancerous cells are produced in the uterine region, it harms the organ irreparably, and causes multiple complications when it comes to menstruation and reproduction. Hence, it’s important to get regular checkups from your gynaecologist for early detection of this disease, especially ultrasounds and biopsies, which help determine its presence and malignity. Balancing out your diet – reducing calories and increasing protein intake, in particular – is supremely important. Apart from that, it’s helpful to keep track of your periods so that you can spot irregularities and report them to your gynaecologist immediately. The more benign versions of this disease can be curable, and treatments usually include medicines or hormone therapy, but the more severe versions require multiple surgeries and radiation therapy.

The most important thing about the uterus is that the ovarian hormones like estrogen and progesterone play an important role in overall health, and not just fertility and menstruation.

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