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Classification of Endometriosis

Staging is a way of describing how mild or severe a condition is. The stage of the endometriosis is determined by looking at the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries and inside the abdomen and lower pelvic area. Usually, this is done with a viewing instrument inserted through a small incision in the belly (laparoscopy). But endometriosis is sometimes first found during surgery for an unrelated condition.

Endometriosis is classified in four stages:

Recommended Related to Endometriosis

Understanding Endometriosis -- the Basics

Endometriosis is a common condition in women. It's chronic, painful, and often gets steadily worse. Normally, the tissue that lines a woman's uterus, known as the endometrium, is found only in the uterus. But when a woman develops endometriosis, microscopic bits of this tissue escape from the uterus and grow on other organs such as the ovaries, the outer wall of the uterus, the ligaments that support the uterus, and the space between the uterus and the rectum. In rare cases, they can spread...

Read the Understanding Endometriosis -- the Basics article > >

  • Stage I: minimal
  • Stage II: mild
  • Stage III: moderate
  • Stage IV: severe

The stage of the endometriosis is based on the:

  • Location of endometriosis growths (implants).
  • Number of places the implants are found.
  • Depth the implants penetrate into normal tissue.
  • Severity of the scar tissue (adhesions) around the implants.
By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Last Revised July 7, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 07, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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