Diagnosis of Endometriosis

Endometriosis affects around 1/10 women during their reproductive years (around 16-49), with a 3 of 4 of those diagnosed experience chronic over the course of these years. While period pain and cramping is expected, sufferers of endometriosis will experience a much more intense pain before and during their period, as well as additional pain and ongoing issues.

Symptoms and signs of endometriosis

Endometriosis is when cells usually found in the uterine lining are found outside of the uterus on outer organs and tissues, such as the ovaries, bladder or bowel. They shed in the same was as the uterus lining, but do not have anywhere to escape the body, which can lead to several issues.

While not all women experience the same signals, such as pain, as each other, there are a few signs that suggest endometriosis.

  • Pain in the pelvis, lower abdomen area, rectum or vagina
  • Pain during intercourse or defecation
  • Abnormal menstruation, heavy or very painful menstruation
  • Abdominal fullness or cramping

If you experience any of these symptoms you should speak to your doctor to determine the possibility of endometriosis.

Diagnosing endometriosis

In order to diagnose endometriosis an individual needs to reach out to their doctor to discuss what pain they’re experiencing and how frequently, as well as discuss past health problems and family history. Specialists can then perform a physical exam to determine the exact location of the pain or any targeted areas of discomfort. If a doctor suspects endometriosis, then more tests will usually have to be performed.

Tests for endometriosis diagnoses

There are a few ways that doctors can test for possible endometriosis.

Pelvic exam

A doctor will manually feel around the pelvic area to spot any abnormalities such as scarring or cysts around your organs. Small cells, however, may not be able to be determined with a physical exam, unless they have formed cysts.


Magnetic Resonance Imaging uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create a detailed image of the pelvic area, including organs, tissues and cells. This can help the doctor determine the location and scope of the endometriosis cells to better plan for possible surgery.


Signs of endometriosis cells can be found on an ultrasound, which uses high-frequency sound waves to produce an image of the pelvic area. While this can’t confirm endometriosis completely it can help the doctor spot any cells surrounding the uterus and pelvic area.


This is a minor surgery where a doctor will cut a small incision in your abdomen to see in and around the uterus. The surgeon will use a small viewing instrument, a laparoscope, to investigate the area and determine abnormal cells

With a laparoscopy your doctor may take cells our to further testing, however, if identified a doctor can treat the endometriosis during this surgery, so you won’t have to come back for a second surgery.

Endometriosis can be a chronic and debilitating condition and can sometimes result in possible infertility. If you are concerned about strong pelvic pains or abnormal periods, speak to your GP or specialist doctor as soon as possible. For questions call 1300 851 968.

OMNI Ultrasound & Gynaecological Care

Condous performs Advanced Endosurgery procedures for women needing intervention for pelvic masses, adnexal pathology, severe endometriosis or hysterectomy. He also runs ‘Hands on’ Live Sheep Laparoscopic Workshops for gynaecologists at Camden Veterinarian School.
Having completed an undergraduate degree with the University of Adelaide, he left Australia in 1993 and moved to London where he completed his training in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. From 2001 to 2003 Condous worked as a Senior Research Fellow at St George’s Hospital, London. At St George’s he set up the Acute Gynaecology Unit, the first in the United Kingdom. It was also during this time that he developed an interest in Early Pregnancy and especially the management of pregnancies of unknown location (PULs). Condous has developed many mathematical models for the prediction of outcome of PULs which have been featured in numerous peer review journals. In 2005, he returned to Australia where he completed his Laparoscopic Fellowship at the Centre for Advanced Reproductive Endosurgery, Royal North Shore, Sydney.

Condous was appointed as a Consultant Gynaecologist and Senior Lecturer at Nepean Hospital in 2006 and soon was made Associate Professor. In 2010, he was made Departmental Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Nepean Hospital. He obtained the MRCOG in 1999 and was made FRANZCOG in 2005. In 2009, he was awarded his Doctorate in Medicine (MD), University of London, for his thesis entitled: “The management of pregnancies of unknown location and the development of new mathematical models to predict outcome”.

Condous has edited three books including the “Handbook of Early Pregnancy Care”, published over 100 papers in international journals and is internationally renowned for his work in Early Pregnancy. He is the Associate Editor for Gynaecologic Obstetric Investigation, which is a European based journal, as well as the Australasian Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine (AJUM). He is on the organising committee and is an invited speaker at the International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynaecology (ISUOG) Scientific meeting in Sydney 2013. His current research interests relate to the management of ectopic pregnancy, 1st trimester growth, PULs and miscarriage and the use of transvaginal ultrasound (in particular sonovaginography, to predict posterior compartment deep infiltrating rectovaginal endometriosis).Condous is also actively involved with post-graduate education including the annual running of the Early Pregnancy and Gynaecological Ultrasound Interactive Courses for Sonologists, Radiologists, Sonographers and Gynaecologists in Australia.