If you’re dealing with the pain of endometriosis, you have a few options when it comes to treating it with medicine. Although they won’t cure your endometriosis, they can help ease some of the symptoms and hopefully lessen the pain.
If your symptoms are mild, your doctor will likely suggest you take a pain reliever. NSAIDs like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, and others) or naproxen (Aleve) are good options. Sometimes the pain of endometriosis can be severe, so if these medications don’t ease your symptoms, talk to your doctor about other choices.
Hormonal therapy is a good choice if pain medicines aren’t helping. Hormones can be used to reduce the amount of estrogen your body creates. They can also prevent your menstrual period and cause your lesions to bleed less, decreasing inflammation, scarring, and ovarian cyst formation.
The most common hormones prescribed for endometriosis include:
- Birth control pills, patches, and vaginal rings
- Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (Gn-RH) agonists and antagonists
- Progestin-only contraceptives. Talk to your doctor about which options are best for you.
- Danazol (Danocrine)
Hormone therapy can cause side effects such as weight gain, depression, acne, body hair, and irregular bleeding. Also, if you stop taking them, your symptoms may come back. Talk to your doctor if you have any.