Menstruation holds the fertility key

Menstruation holds the fertility key

Menstruation holds the fertility key

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Menstrual effluent or ME as it is called, provides an entire encyclopaedia of information on #femalehealth.

Without the need of invasive needles, the substance we usually call blood and consider waste can tell us a lot about fertility. Containing endometrial tissue with viable cells, immune cells, nucleic acids, proteins, and even microorganisms from the vaginal microbiome, it can help clinicians monitor and diagnose a multitude of health conditions. It can help to diagnose diabetes and thyroid disease as well as to help diagnose disorders such as endometriosis, recurrent miscarriage, and cancer. There are more than 300 unique proteins in menstrual blood that are not found in peripheral blood, along with a specific composition of immune cells, which are suitable for monitoring cytokine levels.

One would think that due to not becoming pregnant, everything that leaves the body with menstrual blood is dead, but it’s not true. “There are a lot of live cells there,” says Christine Metz, an endometriosis researcher at Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research at Northwell Health. “It’s amazing how much you can learn about a biologic sample that we just ignored for — I don’t want to say how many years.”

Just diagnosing endometriosis sometimes takes a decade, and often requires a laparoscopic procedure in which a viewing instrument is inserted, through an incision, into the abdomen and tissue is retrieved and biopsied. By testing menstrual blood, the diagnose could be faster, less invasive, and more accessible. We in-fertility are appalled by the fact that some physicians, still today, are not really helping, being reluctant to talk about it with their patients and worried they would not be willing to give their menstrual effluent. Midwife Leah Hazard, calls it the “yuck factor”. Shame associated with periods leads many doctors and scientists to avoid the subject. In a review of scientific papers, Hazard finds that there are about four hundred studies on menstrual effluent compared with more than fifteen thousand for semen or sperm.

All of this fairly new information points to a need for further studies and research of menstrual effluent. Help us share this information on Instagram or Facebook and get closer to simple, fast and non-invasive diagnose of issues affecting fertility, reproductive health and wellbeing of women

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