Ozone therapy has been gaining ground in the medical field for over half a century. Commonly called “supercharged oxygen therapy,” ozone therapy uses oxygen molecules to target certain issues and encourage healing. These qualities make ozone therapy for endometriosis management a potentially effective option.
Characterized by abnormal uterine lining growth, endometriosis can be painful and generate a host of life-disrupting issues for the women affected. Treatment is generally geared toward managing symptoms to improve quality of life, and ozone therapy could play a role. At the Coyle Institute, Dr. Michael Coyle and his team specialize in treating urogynecological conditions in the most comprehensive, effective ways, including endometriosis. Find out how ozone therapy could help with the management of endometriosis symptoms.
Endometriosis is a common condition that affects more than 11 percent of women. This painful disorder involves the growth of tissue (endometrium) outside of the uterus. Endometrium can affect all the reproductive organs and tissues found in the pelvic region, and, in the most severe cases, the endometrium will spread so far that other vital organs and tissues are affected.
Normally, endometrial tissue collects within the uterus. The tissue breaks down and expels with the normal menstrual cycle. However, the endometrium that grows outside the uterus gets trapped — the additional tissue has no clear pathway to leave the body. Therefore, it can form lesions of scar-like tissue that stress the surrounding organs and tissues.
Signs and Symptoms of Endometriosis
Endometriosis is not always obvious in the beginning stages. Additionally, the condition is commonly overlooked or misdiagnosed as another urogynecological condition or even something like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
The symptoms can be unique to the individual but can include:
- Severe pelvic pain, especially during periods
- Pain with urination and bowel movements
- Heavy menstrual periods, irregular periods or intermenstrual bleeding
- Difficulties with fertility
- Pain during sex or after sex
- Gastrointestinal discomforts, such as constipation, nausea and bloating
Endometriosis can have a detrimental effect on a woman’s health when not managed properly. The condition can also negatively affect quality of life because of the disruption of abnormal bleeding, bouts of intense pain and potential impact on fertility.
Treatment for endometriosis is usually centered around managing symptoms, which may include medications, hormone therapy or surgical intervention as a last resort. If surgery is recommended, it may involve a more conservative approach to removing endometrial tissues or a more invasive approach, such as the removal of the uterus or a full hysterectomy.
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Ozone Therapy: An Overview
Ozone is a type of oxygen that contains a greater number of molecules than typical oxygen. This supercharged oxygen may have therapeutic effects on the body that could be valuable in some medical circumstances because of the effect on the immune system response and inflammation. While ozone therapy is not yet FDA-approved or well-researched, preliminary reports have shown ozone therapy to be potentially valuable for a range of conditions and reasons, such as:
- Wound disinfection and care
- Immune system activation
- Macular degeneration
- Viral diseases
- Ischemic heart disease
Ozone therapy involves delivering ozone gas to the body in various ways, including topically and through the blood using an IV. The most modern delivery method is IV ozone therapy, such as with Major Auto-Hemotherapy (MAH) IV ozone therapy. MAH ozone therapy involves ozonating a patient’s blood and then returning that blood to the body.
Ozone Therapy as a Complementary Treatment for Endometriosis
Ozone therapy is thought to offer two primary properties that could prove valuable for endometriosis treatment: anti-inflammatory and immune-modulating properties.
Endometriosis pain is commonly associated with inflammation, and inflammation is directly controlled by the immune system. The surrounding tissues often become inflamed due to the additional fibrous tissues in the area and changes in oxygen-rich blood circulation through the pelvic region. Additionally, the endometrial tissue can become inflamed.
Theoretically, targeting the immune system and inflammatory responses with ozone therapy could potentially deter some endometriosis symptoms. In early animal studies on pelvic inflammatory disease, endometrial inflammation responded well to ozone therapy; inflammation was reduced. In another animal study, ozone therapy was used to treat cows with a history of endometriosis symptoms. Inflammation and repeated uterine infections were reduced.
Ozone Therapy at Coyle Institute
The Coyle Institute is currently implementing MAH ozone therapy protocols in endometriosis treatment. While the treatment has not yet been FDA-cleared for urogynecological conditions, ozone therapy has shown much anecdotal promise as a complementary treatment for endometriosis management in clinical settings. Ozone IV therapy is generally considered safe with an extremely low risk profile. The most common side effects are mild, flu-like symptoms. There is also a risk of air embolism if IV treatment inadvertently sends air bubbles through the circulatory system. However, with advanced forms of ozone therapy like MAH conducted by an experienced physician like Dr. Coyle, the likelihood of such an event is greatly reduced.
The Future of Ozone Therapy: Endometriosis and Beyond
Ozone therapy could be a valuable tool in the treatment of endometriosis. While ongoing research is necessary to firmly establish all the benefits, ozone therapy could also benefit a number of other urogynecological conditions. At the Coyle Institute, we already embrace innovative approaches like ozone therapy in advancing endometriosis management.
Are you interested in the latest approaches to endometriosis treatment? Reach out to the team at Coyle Institute at 850-637-8258 to schedule an appointment.