The following are symptoms commonly experienced by women with adenomyosis. Please note: Not all women will experience all symptoms. The most common symptoms are severe pelvic pain and heavy menstrual bleeding.
Painful menstrual bleeding (dysmenorrhea, can sometimes be as severe as the last stage of labor) – see page on dysmenorrhea for more detailed information.
Heavy menstrual bleeding (menorrhagia) – see page on menorrhagia for more detailed information.
Prolonged menstrual bleeding (8 to 14 days or more, also called menorrhagia) – see page on menorrhagia for more detailed information.
Bleeding between periods (spotting) or a continuous bloody discharge
Passing large blood clots
Chronic anemia due to excessive blood loss possibly leading to extreme fatigue and dizziness
Severe bloating due to enlarged, bulky or heavy uterus which often doubles or triples in size – see page on bloating for more detailed information.
Bleeding and/or pain during ovulation
Tenderness/pain during pelvic exam
Painful intercourse (dyspareunia) – see page on painful intercourse for more detailed information.
A “bearing down” sensation
Burning sensation in uterus
Heaviness in the legs
Leg and hip pain
Nausea and/or vomiting
Pressure on the bladder resulting in pain, frequent urination, interstitial cystitis, and other urinary tract issues
Painful bowel movements, diarrhea, and other GI disturbances during menstruation – see page on GI symptoms for more detailed information.
Lower back pain
Depression, anxiety, extreme mood swings, and other psychological issues
**Symptoms usually resolve after menopause because of lower estrogen levels in a woman’s body.
Symptoms of adenomyosis can present as either a gastrointestinal problem or a urological issue. My symptoms were primarily gastrointestinal which led to the misdiagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for many, many years.
It is so important for general practitioners to be knowledgeable about this disorder since they are usually the first doctor a patient will see. In addition, gastroenterologists and urologists need to be up-to-date on this disorder and work with gynecologists so the adenomyosis patient will get effective treatment.