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With adenomyosis, tissue in the uterus lining grows into the inner wall of the organ. It causes tissue thickening and painful menstrual periods with heavy bleeding. These symptoms can complicate your daily life. Experts at Virginia Mason Franciscan Health deliver treatments that relieve symptoms and put you back in control. 

We offer a warm and welcoming care environment with providers who are easy to talk to. Our team quickly gets to the source of your symptoms and tailors therapies to your needs. You can access sophisticated options, such as fertility-sparing procedures that preserve your ability to get pregnant.

Adenomyosis care at Virginia Mason Franciscan Health: Why choose us?

Respected gynecologists, nurse midwives and nurse practitioners deliver comprehensive care. We excel in treating conditions like adenomyosis that can be challenging to diagnose. We also offer a broad range of treatments, giving you the best chances for symptom relief.

Highlights of our program include: 

  • Accurate diagnosis: Adenomyosis symptoms are sometimes mistaken for other gynecologic issues, like endometriosis and uterine fibroids. We conduct a thorough exam using transvaginal ultrasound, which offers detailed views. These efforts help us correctly get to the source of your symptoms so you receive effective treatment. 
  • Advanced treatments: Many people feel better with medical therapies, such as birth control. But if they are not successful, you still have options, like myomectomy. This minimally invasive procedure removes thickened tissue using gentle techniques that reduce the likelihood of recurrence. Find out more about minimally invasive gynecologic surgery.
  • Personalized approach: Your preferences matter to us, which is why we take the time to get to know you. We then tailor recommendations to your medical needs, beliefs and lifestyle. We offer alternatives to hysterectomy, like uterine artery embolization, a minimally invasive procedure that preserves your ability to get pregnant.

Get adenomyosis care
Adenomyosis is surprisingly common. The condition affects as many as 8 out of 10 women over 40 but can also be present in younger women. If you think you may have it, the first step toward healing is an evaluation from our experienced specialists. Get started by scheduling a virtual visit.

Adenomyosis symptoms

Adenomyosis sometimes has no symptoms. People who do experience symptoms commonly have painful periods with heavy bleeding. 

You may also experience:

Evaluation and diagnosis of adenomyosis

We start by discussing your symptoms. Your provider listens carefully as you describe what you're experiencing, how long you've had symptoms and their impact on your daily activities. 

You may also need tests, such as:

  • Pelvic exam: This assessment helps us detect scarring or unusual growths. Your provider inserts a gloved finger into your vagina and gently presses on your pelvic organs.
  • Blood tests: This information enables us to rule out other medical issues. Your provider also checks for complications of heavy bleeding, such as anemia.
  • Transvaginal ultrasound: Your provider passes a small ultrasound probe through your vagina to reach the uterus. Soundwaves produce detailed images of the uterus and nearby organs.
  • MRI: If we need more information after an ultrasound, we may recommend an MRI. This test uses a magnet and radio waves to provide a higher level of detail.

Adenomyosis treatment

Adenomyosis treatment often starts with medical therapies. Your provider may recommend drugs to relieve cramping. Birth control or a Mirena® IUD may also make your periods lighter and less bothersome. 

If medical therapies fail to relieve your symptoms, you may need a procedure. We offer:

  • These procedures are for people who wish to keep their uterus. However, these treatments can affect your ability to become pregnant. 

    • Uterine artery embolization: Specially trained radiologists (interventional radiologists) use real-time imaging and tiny tubes to access blood vessels in your uterus. They deliver substances to close certain arteries and lessen blood flow.
    • Endometrial ablation: Interventional radiologists access the uterus through a blood vessel. Using a tiny heat source, they create scar tissue on the top layers of the uterus. Surgeons also perform this treatment using hysteroscopy.
  • If you wish to become pregnant, fertility-sparing treatment may be right for you. It involves: 

    • Adenomyomectomy: Minimally invasive gynecologic surgeons use small incisions and tiny instruments to access the affected area of your uterus. They then remove tissue growths and repair the uterine wall, making it possible for you to have a safe pregnancy.
  • If you do not wish to become pregnant and are open to not having a uterus, care may include: 

    • Minimally invasive hysterectomy: Surgically removing the uterus offers permanent relief from adenomyosis. But our record of success with other procedures, like adenomyomectomy, means fewer people need it.

Schedule an appointment

Find out more about our gynecology services in the Puget Sound area or make an appointment.