Oulu, Finland – Endometriosis – a chronic condition that often causes severe pain and can lead to infertility – can limit the ability of middle-aged women to work, results from a recent study show.
Researchers at Oulu University Hospital analyzed data from more than 3,800 working women – 348 with endometriosis – and consulted resources from the Finnish Health Care Register, the Finnish Social Insurance Institution and the Finnish Pension Center. In addition, at the age of 46, participants were given a questionnaire on the work ability index, after which the researchers followed them up for several years.
The results show that the women who had endometriosis by the age of 46 were more likely to have poor work ability and higher absenteeism of 10 days or more. Compared to the participants who did not have endometriosis, those who had endometriosis had an average of 10 more days of disability (55.5 vs. 45.5), but almost 20 days less unemployment (40.6 vs. 59.2) ) between the ages of 46 and 48 years.
“We encourage physicians to recognize the importance of timely treatment for endometriosis in promoting work ability,” the researchers write.
The study was published online in the journal on July 7th Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica.