Adverse Effects on Female Human Reproductive Health from Exposure to Endocrine Disruptors: Focus on Endometrial Lesions
- Eftychia Karoutsou, Petros Karoutsos, Dimitrios Karoutsos
Based upon existing psychological studies of endometriosis, the hypothesis was tested if patients suffering from this disorder differ from other infertile females with respect to psychological characteristics. Using questionnaires as well as a semi-structured psychotherapeutic interview 38 patients with endometriosis and 18 females with tubal sterility were investigated. A comparison of both groups indicated a higher level of anxiety and some evidence for a somatic preoccupation in the endometriotic patients. The analysis of the interviews (which were judged by several independent raters) confirmed the hypothesis of gender role conflicts in combination with endometriosis. This conflict seemed to be characterized by a negative experience of menarche and puberty, early gynecological problems and negative sexual experiences. This constellation is illustrated using a typical case. Based upon these results, further studies of endometriosis using a psychosomatic perspective seem to be promising.