Endometriosis in Australia: Prevalence and hospitalisations

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Endometriosis in Australia: Prevalence and hospitalisations

Almost 11% (one in nine) of women aged 40–44 and 7% of women aged 25–29 have endometriosis, according to the latest Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report, Endometriosis in Australia: Prevalence and hospitalisations.
 
The report provides new insights into the historically under-recognised condition and includes the most recent estimates of endometriosis prevalence in Australia. Based on national data from health services and the large Australian longitudinal study on women’s health, researchers at the University of Queensland estimated the prevalence of endometriosis in women born in:

  • 1973–78, with data available up until age 40–44
  • 1989–95, with data available up until age 25–29.

Prevalence of the condition was found to be 1.7 times higher for women born in 1989–95, who were diagnosed with endometriosis by age 25–29 (6.6%), compared with women born in 1973–78 at the same age (4%).

This recent increase may indicate a greater awareness of endometriosis among the general public and health professionals, leading to increased diagnosis and reporting of diagnosis among women born more recently.
 
According to the report, endometriosis cost an estimated $7.4 billion in Australia in 2017–18, mostly through reduced quality of life and productivity losses. However, the AIHW states that this may be an underestimate due to under-diagnosis and difficulties in diagnosing the condition.

Read the Report