Nissa spent the last 10 years living with endometriosis, but without a diagnosis. Going back and forth with her primary doctor, getting X-rays and CT scans, going to an orthopedic to see if there was something wrong with her hips or back, the journey to discover what was causing the pains in her lower abdomen led her doctors to believe it was just phantom pain, or that her period was just more difficult this time around.
Endometriosis is a condition that can develop very early in young girls, even with the start of their first cycle. The pain associated with the disease is a result of cells that are similar to the endometrial lining that exist in areas outside of the uterus. The cells behave like the lining of the uterus. Each month, they thicken, shed and bleed, but without a natural exit path, the tissue becomes inflamed. This can lead to intense pain and bloating.
“If I would push anywhere from my belly button down, it was painful,” said Nissa. “You get grumpy because you are tired of hurting. My GYN referred me to CIGC. Ever since I had my appointment, now I hear your radio commercials all the time. Thankfully you have an office in Annapolis, because I live in Southern Maryland. I went to see Dr. Baxi. Everyone in the office that I talked to was always so friendly. They sounded like they wanted to talk to me. They made me feel so comfortable.”
Rupen Baxi, MD is a laparoscopic GYN specialist trained in The Center for Innovative GYN Care techniques.
“When I got to the office, I didn’t have to wait very long. Dr. Baxi made me feel very comfortable right away. His bedside manner is fantastic. He never looked at his watch and he answered all of my questions. As soon as I was done talking, he said based on your symptoms, I think you have endometriosis, but we have to go in and see, which is the only way to confirm the diagnosis. The only way to confirm endometriosis is through a laparoscopic procedure. During the surgery he found that I did have it and he removed it. The recovery wasn’t bad at all.”
Laparoscopic endometriosis excision makes it possible for many women to regain normalcy in their lives sooner than with open, more invasive procedures. Endometriosis excision is the gold-standard procedure for treating the condition. Excision is a procedure that removes lesions from the pelvic cavity, or other areas of the body.
“I’m surprised that more doctors in more practices don’t pick this up when it comes to the patients complaining of certain pains from your belly button and below. My main doctor told me that I did not have endometriosis because it didn’t show up on the CT scan. It was frustrating finding out after the fact that endometriosis cannot be diagnosed without a laparoscopic procedure.”
“It affected the quality of my life. There were some times where it was hard to walk. At work I’m a production manager. It’s my job to walk around and make sure everyone is getting their jobs done. I was bent over the table because it hurt to stand or walk. I was at work, but it was lost time at work. I have three kids and they want to do kid stuff. They want to play. I had to take Advil and let it work and ask them to give me some time.”
Recovery from endometriosis excision at CIGC is fast.
“I’m all healed. I had my check-up with Dr. Baxi. I’ve been able to lift things, and so far my period coming back has been normal. I was worried with my first period, but everything so far is good. Looking back there was so much time lost going back and forth between other doctors. If I had known about CIGC 9 years ago, life would have been significantly different.”
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The CIGC state-of-the-art specialists are available at three locations in the DC metro area. Virginia patients can visit the Reston, VA location, and Saturday appointments are available. Maryland offices are located in Rockville, MD and Annapolis, MD.
CIGC is dedicated to providing information and materials for women to help navigate the complicated healthcare system. The CIGC founders, minimally invasive GYN surgical specialists Dr. Paul MacKoul, MD and Dr. Natalya Danilyants, MD, developed their advanced GYN surgical techniques using only two small incisions with patients’ well-being in mind. Dr. Rupen Baxi, MD is a CIGC-trained minimally invasive GYN specialist with extensive fellowship training and a respected speaker and researcher.
Their personalized approach to care helps patients understand their condition and the recommended treatment so that they can have confidence from the very start. Our surgeons have performed over 20,000 GYN procedures and are constantly finding better ways to improve outcomes for patients.