Ok, so I am currently curled up on the couch after being sent home from work because of Endometriosis. I need someone to rant to. I need someone to express my pain and frustration to. So, here you are (apologies in advance).
Let’s just set the record straight before we go any further. Endometriosis isn’t just period pain. Yes, its severe cramping during your menstrual cycle but, I have pain during ovulation, intercourse and twinges in my cervix almost every day. It’s basically when the lining that grows inside your womb starts to grow in other places like the cervix, uterus etc. This lining sheds the same ways as it does in the womb but, unlike when the womb sheds it doesn’t have anywhere to go. This in turn causes a degree of internal bleeding leading to painful scar tissue. This can also slow down how quickly you become pregnant.
There’s no way to be 100% sure that this is my diagnosis without going under general anaesthetic and having a gynaecologist look around. It’s something I am seriously considering, especially since Ross and I are eager to have a family one day. My symptoms were hidden for many years and it wasn’t until around last October I seen a change in my cycles. Which is pretty unusual when you are on a contraceptive pill. I went back and forward to my GP for months getting pushed away saying its nothing to do with the pill and I had countless blood tests. All of which said it was down to a B12 deficiency (apparently!). The pain and symptoms worsened over the following months.
By the start of June my symptoms were so intense round about ovulation/menstruation time that we decided I had to consult a private consultant for a second opinion. I applied for an appointment on the Sunday night after a bad weekend and I was seen on the Wednesday. Within 10 minutes of speaking with my (male) consultant he said he was 90% sure it was Endometriosis and I had two options: Use a different contraceptive pill to control the pain or have a Laparoscopy to confirm the diagnosis. With our wedding just over a year away I made it clear that this wasn’t just going to be hidden with a pill. I wanted it treated. I was sent for an internal scan the next week to check for any cysts but everything was clear.
I am now on the waiting list to see an NHS Gynaecologist to start the process again so I can discuss having the Laparoscopy. We didn’t mind paying a couple hundred pounds for a consultation but finding £3k for the operation a year before the wedding isn’t an option. Today was the first month its been so bad that I haven’t been able to work. Being up since 4am having hot baths and using hot water bottles then being on my feet all day treating patients just wasn’t an option. I attempted it but within an hour I was sent home.
I am hoping I don’t have to wait too long to be seen by the NHS but who am I trying to kid? It’s the NHS. 12 week waiting lists just to see someone never mind another waiting list to have the procedure. It’s likely to be the end of the year before I’m better (hopefully).
If anyone has a similar experience, please talk to me. Awareness for this condition has to be known. It’s not just ‘period pains’ and we don’t ‘just need to get on with it’.