Thursday, 18 June 2020

Let's talk about endometriosis

Let's talk about endometriosis, because it affects 10% of women and many people know nothing about it. 

I'm unfortunately part of this 10%, and it's taken most of my adult life to be properly diagnosed. I hesitated about writing this, but in the end decided I'd spent too many years hiding my symptoms and making up stories about why I couldn't do things. Yes, I'm on the introvert side socially, but a lot of my "antisocial" over the years has not actually been by choice.

There are 4 stages of endometriosis, and in 2019 I had a laparoscopy which finally, definitively diagnosed Stage III going into Stage IV.

Without going into specifics, Stage IV is where endo starts to grow onto/into other organs in the pelvic cavity, and if left untreated can cause some fairly awful longer term problems. Nobody knows why this happens.

Yesterday I underwent surgery to have my endo removed. Today my lovely doctors advised they are confident they got it all! Finally, some positive news in 2020!

I'm not looking for sympathy (really, please don't, I'm weirdly awkward and invariably say something dumb), but this disease can have a significant impact on a woman's life and that of her family, and many women don't talk about it or don't feel like they have anyone they can talk about it with, so if you'd like to talk, feel free. Since I started talking, I've discovered several women I already knew who have lived with endo and I had no idea.

Consider 10 women in your life, and then consider that statistically, one is suffering with endo at some level, most likely in silence. They may or may not even know what the problem is. Statistically also, it takes an average 7-10 years to diagnose this condition, although mine took much longer. 

As I've joked-but-not-really to several friends - if this affected men, there would have been a blue pill 30 years ago! But we women have a higher pain tolerance, we "suck it up", and we don't talk enough about women's health for a whole bunch of reasons.

I'm very much looking forward to living the next stage of my life without this beast. Feel free to comment or message if you'd like to chat.

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3 comments:

  1. Wow, I never knew, but then, that's what you said about endometriosis! Get well, Nicky. And thanks for sharing your story.

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  2. I have a daughter with it Nicky. All the very best.

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  3. Hey Nicky - good on you for bringing some information out into the open – it can be a challenge to know when is the right time to let people and on your personal health issues and can take a bit of courage to do so. My girls both have this. Let's hope that this sets you on a healthier path forward. Take care.

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