KKH opens new center for endometriosis patients MD

May 2011

KKH opens new center for endometriosis patients MD

Elvira Manzano

KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) recently opened a centre dedicated to addressing the needs of patients suffering from endometriosis.
The KK Endometriosis Centre is a response to the growing number of endometriosis patients going to KKH for help. Dr. Cynthia Kew, associate consultant at the Minimally Invasive Surgery Unit, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, KKH, said 1,200 women had endometriosis-related surgery at KKH last year. She expects the number to balloon this year given the increasing awareness women have regarding this disease.

… we saw a need to provide a service
dedicated to helping this group of women

“We have seen more than a 25 percent increase in the number of patients coming to KKH for surgery related to endometriosis from 2000 to 2010. As this is a chronic condition with a severe impact on patients and a high likelihood of recurrence, we saw a need to provide a service dedicated to helping this group of women, “she said.

Endometriosis is a condition where there is abnormal growth of endometrial cells outside of the uterus. The cells attach themselves to tissues on the ovaries, Fallopian tubes, and the surface lining of the pelvic cavity, causing severe menstrual pain, chronic pain in the pelvic region, and heavy periods. Other symptoms include painful sexual intercourse, pain during bowel movement or urination, adenomyosis (enlarged womb) and infertility.

Kew added that the condition can lead to complications such as endometriotic ovarian cysts and pelvic and abdominal adhesions. “In severe cases affecting the bowel, there may even be stenosis and obstruction of the bowel, or bloody bowel movements that would require colonic resection,”she said.

Associate Professor Bernard Chern, Deputy Chairman, Division of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, KKH said “the condition is often under-diagnosed as endometriosis may also be present in women with symptoms unrelated to periods, or those who experience minimal discomfort.”

“As the combination of symptoms, severity and specific needs of these patients are diverse, we felt that the availability of a multidisciplinary team of doctors and medical support staff would be optimal to provide holistic care to them,” Kew added.

The centre will adopt a comprehensive and patient-centres approach to improve patients; quality of life. Counselling will also be provided to them for overall wellness.

“In view of the impact that endometriosis can have on a woman’s physical health, social and emotional wellbeing, we believe that the centre’s holistic services will bring greater support and benefits for our patients,” Chern added.