Yesterday Lauren brought us a great post about menstruation, successfully touching upon both the biology of it all and the fear it can strike in an unprepared young girl. A post today about endometriosis seems a fitting chaser. You see, understanding the normal ebb and flow (…wink…) of our menstrual cycles can be daunting and without adequate and accurate knowledge, may be the beginning of fear and distrust for many girls – and then women – of their own bodies.
All of this for a process that is completely normal.
So imagine when something goes wrong. Endometriosis is not normal. It is a chronic, typically painful condition where the cells that are supposed to line only the inside of the uterus migrate and multiply outside of the uterus. This leads not only to irregularities in the menstrual cycle, but can lead to digestive issues, infertility and pain-related disability. Treatment is available and improving, as is (THANK GOODNESS) diagnosis.
For more info, I recommend the following:
Two pieces by Boston’s NPR affiliate, WBUR, on their CommonHealth Blog that tell well the compelling story of a teenage girl and her quest for care and answers for her pelvic pain, ultimately diagnosed as endometriosis.
- Secret Suffering: Teens With Endometriosis And Years Of Baffling Pain
- New Endometriosis Center Launches With $3M From Marriott Foundation
The Endometriosis Foundation of America strives to increase disease recognition, provide advocacy, facilitate expert surgical training, and fund landmark endometriosis research. Engaged in a robust campaign to inform both the medical community and the public, the EFA places particular emphasis on the critical importance of early diagnosis and effective intervention while simultaneously providing education to the next generation of medical professionals and their patients.
Hello Endo Blog – Started by 26 year-old Heather Pickens after being diagnosed with Endometriosis, Interstitial Cystitis and Pelvic Floor Dysfunction. She blogs to discuss her daily struggles and to spread awareness on her “invisible illnesses.”