ENDOMETRIOSIS (Self diagnosis)
I am introducing a new segment on my blog. It is called the ‘self diagnose’ segment. This is simply where I will be sharing certain symptoms you should look out for, for certain diseases and some not diseases, just random things we go through. I am not a Doctor or anything, I will be speaking from experience and experiences of others. I might even have a few people come on here and speak about their experiences. All this in the hopes of helping someone look out for certain symptoms, prevent anything from transcending or simply just to clear any ambiguity on what you might be going through really.
My first guest is a friend I have known for many years and just recently learnt about her battle with endometriosis. She too was oblivious of her condition growing up but she definitely felt some symptoms that made sense after the diagnosis. I spoke to her about her journey from diagnosis to living with this condition and here is what she had to say.
1. Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Jessie and I am in the field of advertising
- What is endometriosis?
After doing research, the easiest definition I found while trying to figure all this out for myself was from Mayo clinic; so simply put, it is a painful condition in which tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus, grows outside your uterus. With endometriosis, displaced endometrial tissue continues to act as it normally would. It thickens, breaks down and bleeds with each menstrual cycle. Because this displaced tissue has no way to exit the body, it becomes trapped. Surrounding tissue can become irritated, eventually developing scar tissue and adhesion. Endometriosis most commonly involves the ovaries, Fallopian tubes, and the tissue lining the pelvis. Endometrial tissue may also spread beyond pelvic organs. Personally, Endometriosis causes me a lot of pain, I mean severe pain especially during my period.
3. Did you know what that was before you were diagnosed?
No! I had no clue, in fact I was first diagnosed with Adenomyosis before I found out that I had Endometriosis. Both sounded like rocket science to me.
4. When did you find out you had endometriosis?
That will be 4 years ago.
5. What life changes did you have to make?
A lot of life changes starting from my mental; I have had to take up a positive outlook towards living with Endo because this condition can make you lose yourself.
Physically; I underwent a procedure that later made me lose a lot of weight, I therefore started working out just so that I could maintain a certain weight as well as have a healthy body.
The diet part is the killer to me, I had to drop so many foods to reduce bloating: no wheat, no red meat, no dairy, no alcohol! I will not lie, I sometime just want to indulge in alcohol and at times I do, but the aftermath is devastating, it’s like self sabotage. y‘know?
6. What are some symptoms for endometriosis that someone should look out for?
The symptoms vary from person to another. Some women have Endo and experience nothing else other than infertility or different symptoms and others like me experience painful periods, excessive bleeding, constipation that leads to hemorrhoids, bloating, nauseous and fatigue during my periods, painful bowel movements during periods, painful sex, lower back aches and so many more. So I’d say it all starts by acknowledging that painful periods are not normal and getting yourself checked .
7. Are there signs you felt growing up that make sense now?
Yes, most definitely! the pain and the excessive bleeding now make sense. I remember I would at times bleed from my front and my backside and often my parents would take me to hospital to be treated for amoeba. Now I understand what it meant.
8. What tips have helped keep the pain under control when going through this season?
I just used to self-diagnose with a whole lot of painkillers that led me to become dependable on them, however, I came to learn about the benefits of diet change from the Endometriosis Foundation of Kenya, i.e. taking Moringa, more veggies, fruits etc. and now I can say the intensity of the pain is less.
9. What red alerts should someone look out for that might help with early diagnosis?
Painful periods are not normal, this is the first sign to be keen on.
(a)Can it be prevented? As of now, no!
(b) Can it be cured? There is no known cause and no known cure
10. What parting shot words would you have that will help shed more light into this condition?
I know that scientists in Kenya and globally are working tirelessly to find ways to diagnose Endo other than a laparoscopy and also find a cure to the condition, but while they do that, it is key to accept what you are going through and expect a healing miracle from God. If not, His grace is sufficient to take you through whatever lessons it is He wants you to learn from the experiences you undergo from Endo.
N/B: Please note, I do not encourage self diagnosis and self treatment. By using the word ‘self diagnose’, it is in the hopes of bringing light to symptoms you should look out for before visiting your doctor .
Thank you so much for stopping by .
I do not own the rights to these pictures.