High time for answers, exposing endo pain

Young women register now for Endo High Tea, Bligh Park Community Centre, Saturday 26 March. Raising awareness, becoming an Endo Warrior and raising funds for Endometriosis Australia

Endometrosis is as common as asthma and diabetes, but few know about this painful disease unless you are a woman that suffers silently with it.

It’s often waved off as just a case of painful periods that you’ll “get used to every month” or “get over” through pregnancy or treatments ranging from medication to invasive surgery.

Endo Warriors: Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman and Sacha Street, of Bligh Park, will be speaking at the Endo High Tea, at Bligh Park Community Centre, this Saturday.

It can be debilitating, affecting every aspect of a woman’s life from puberty through to menopause. One-in-nine women in Australia suffering from endo.

Do you have it? How do you manage it? How do you get it? Is there a cure?

These issues will be discussed and shared at an afternoon tea at Tiningi Hall, Bligh Park Community Centre, from 2-3.30pm this Saturday (26 March) when you can meet with Sacha Street and hear her story.

Sacha, from Bligh Park, has been living with endo since she was 13 and is recovering from another recent surgery.

The event, hosted by Macquarie MP Susan Templeman, is for all women, especially young women, to help raise awareness about this disease and raise funds for Endometriosis Australia.

“It’s about time we stopped the taboo and misunderstandings about this common disease, and having young and older women share their stories, makes other less afraid to ask for help,” Ms Templeman said.

“Endometriosis is common, but symptoms are variable, and that means it takes 6.5 years on average for a diagnosis to be made.

“The disease sees tissue similar to the lining of the womb growing outside it, in other parts of the body. While it most often affects the reproductive organs, it’s also frequently found in the bowel and bladder, and has also been found in muscle, joints, the lungs and brain.

“Unfortunately, for many women it causes pelvic pain that completely puts life on hold for around or during their period, and can impact on fertility.”

This ‘silent’ disease costs us $9.7 billion annually.

“According to Endometriosis Australia, two-thirds of those costs are attributed to a loss in productivity, with the rest – about $2.5 billion – being direct healthcare costs,” Ms Templeman said.

To register to attend the event, visit this link: register for endo high tea 

Those who can’t attend but would like to donate to help Endometriosis Australia continue its good work can visit https://hightimefortea.org.au/t/susantemplemansteam

Sacha’s story:

Sacha, who has been living with endometriosis since she was 13 years old, says she’s keen to advocate for sufferers who often don’t know what condition they have.

“I remember it being quite painful to begin with and as time went on, the pain had only gotten worse. I was just shy of my 18th birthday when I went in for my first laparoscopy – where they put a scope through a few spots in your abdomen – to see what was going on in my reproductive system,” Sacha said.

“I was originally diagnosed with early Stage 1 endo, still quite a shock at age 17, but at least I had an answer for my pain.

“Fast forward four years and I’ve got a heatpack on my stomach after getting my first painful post-operative period. After my second laparoscopy last month, I was diagnosed with Stage 2 endo in multiple spots and preliminary adenomyosis, a similar condition but which sees the tissue growing on the inside of the uterus wall in a spot called the myometrium. I also have suspected polycystic ovaries.

“I am still trying to come to terms with how this has all unfolded in such a short period of time – pardon the pun!

“Endo has affected almost every aspect of my life and is a condition so overwhelmingly misunderstood. If I told you that it’s as common as asthma or diabetes you’d be right for shaking your head in disbelief thinking, ‘how come I know nothing about this.’

“I also felt this way after my original diagnosis. Raising money is so important because money creates funding for research, which in turn, provides more answers for care providers so they can provide the right kind of treatment for endometriosis.

“It also helps us, the endo warriors, try to understand the why. The why behind feeling so misunderstood and disbelieved. The why behind the disease we still know so little about. “

Main picture by Sydney Simms, Unsplash.

Inset picture: Federal Member for Macquarie Susan Templeman with Sacha Street of Bligh Park.



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