A wait of 8 years to diagnose endometriosis – @meduelelaregla Sexuality and menstrual cycle in Madrid

One in ten women (and probably 1 in 8 in the industrialized world) have endometriosis and / or adenomyosis worldwide. Despite the severity of this disease, it takes an average of 8 years to get a diagnosis. During this time, 1 in 5 cis women and trans men who suffer from the disease suffer excruciating pain that is often underestimated or mistaken for other ailments.

From INTIMINA, a company that offers the first range dedicated to taking care of all aspects of vulvovaginal health, have launched ‘The Wait’ (The Wait), a shocking campaign in which the protagonists are 8-year-old girls, whose age is equivalent to the torturous wait that those affected face until they give us the diagnosis of endometriosis.

Stories from Spain (mine), France, Italy, the United States and the United Kingdom have been included in INTIMINA’s international campaign. It is a beautiful campaign in which girls act like adults who have spent all those years waiting for an endometriosis diagnosis. Although the average wait for a clinical trial is 8 years, several of the women who have shared our stories have suffered much longer diagnostic delays: In one case, it took more than 30 years for one of the women to get her diagnosis. “We hope this campaign will spark a much needed conversation about endometriosis. It is totally unacceptable that affected women have to wait an average of eight years to receive help and that some wait even decades of their lives enduring pain ” says Pilar Ruiz, communication manager for INTIMINA in Spain.

In my case, it was 18 long years of waiting in which pain began to be part of my daily life, from the age of 14 until the operation with 32: In 2009 I had surgery in extremis: they removed my 2 uterine tubes and suddenly I had to say goodbye to the possibility of being a mother spontaneously. However, that was the operation that changed my life ”:

How do I know if my pain is normal or if I may be suffering from endometriosis? I repeat some tips apart from video with CYCLO to learn how to differentiate “dysmenorrhea” from “endometriosis or adenomyosis”:

  • The most common symptoms of endometriosis are Recurring pelvic pain, pain with penetrative sex, or pain before and during menstruation. You may also notice a change in bowel rhythms, a lot of fatigue, migraines, and difficulty getting pregnant. Heavy bleeding often accompanies adenomiosis.
  • Keep a symptom diary before you see your GP. Specifically, note when you experience symptoms in relation to menstruation or digestion: if it is before, during or after
  • It is also possible start treating symptoms with heat, hot baths with Epsom salts, gentle exercise, pain relievers, or hormonal medications, before considering more invasive options such as laparoscopic surgery (performed by a gynecologist specializing in endometriosis).
  • Going to the gynecologist is essential to further investigate the diagnosis after the symptoms. With this information, the risks and benefits of different hormonal treatments or an operation can be assessed.
  • Think about your diet: There are studies that confirm that drinking a lot of alcohol and eating a lot of red meat can worsen some of the symptoms of endometriosis, such as inflammation and painful periods. Magnesium and other specific supplements prescribed by a dietitian-nutritionist specialized in endometriosis can help with pain and slow the progression of the disease.
  • A healthy and balanced lifestyle with regular sleep patterns and physical activity to metabolize estrogens can very positively influence symptoms.

If you want to know more about INTIMINA’s campaign on endometriosis, go to his blog.

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A wait of 8 years to diagnose endometriosis – @meduelelaregla Sexuality and menstrual cycle in Madrid


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