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Endometriosis in their 40s may hinder women’s ability to work: study

Photo: ake1150sb/iStockphoto

Oulu, Finland — Endometriosis – a chronic disease that often triggers severe pain and can result in infertility – may restrict the working ability of middle-aged women, results of a recent study show.

Researchers from Oulu University Hospital analyzed data from more than 3,800 working women – 348 with endometriosis – while consulting resources from the Finnish Care Register of Health Care, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland and the Finnish Center for Pensions. Additionally, a work ability index questionnaire was given to participants at age 46, after which the researchers followed up with them for multiple years.

Findings reveal that the women who had endometriosis at age 46 exhibited a greater probability of poor work ability and higher rates of absenteeism of 10 or more days. When compared with the participants who didn’t have endometriosis, those who did – on average – took 10 more disability days (55.5 vs. 45.5) but had nearly 20 fewer unemployment days (40.6 vs. 59.2) between ages 46 and 48.


“For health care practitioners, we encourage recognition of the relevance of organizing timely care for endometriosis to promote work ability,” the researchers write.

The study was published online July 7 in the journal Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica.

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