Photo Courtesy: Shutterstock
If there is anything hilarious about being doubled-over in pain and feeling ashamed for coming across as too “whiny” about a gynecological condition, then comedian Amy Schumer would have found it.
So, Schumer’s revelation this week about her battles with endometriosis was all the more powerful for how straightforward and direct the comedian was in talking about this often overlooked topic of women’s health.
“I am so appreciative of Amy Schumer’s description of endometriosis as a ‘lonely disease,’ as the stigma associated with gynecological conditions too often compounds the pain so many women experience,” said Candace Howe, M.D., a board certified obstetrician/gynecologist. “At Hoag, we offer the latest in diagnostic testing and treatment options to help the more than 11% of women of reproductive age who are affected by this disorder.”
If you are suffering from gynecological pain or have questions about your health, make an appointment today with a Hoag Medical Group physician at www.hoag.org.
Dr. Howe shares a few insights that women like Schumer know all too well:
Endometriosis can cause infertility. Because endometriosis is marked by uterine tissue growing where it shouldn’t – outside the uterus, along the fallopian tubes or even, as in Amy Schumer’s case, the appendix – it can contribute to infertility. “When the growth blocks the fallopian tubes or forms scar tissue, it can be more difficult for women to get pregnant,” said Dr. Howe. “We recommend that women who have a history of endometriosis and want to get pregnant work with their doctor to determine what treatments or procedures might help them achieve their fertility goals.”
Endometriosis is treatable. From medications to surgical options to alternative medicine treatments, Hoag physicians and specialists are able to help women through this painful disease. “No one should have to live in pain,” Dr. Howe said. “Whether it’s pelvic floor therapy, surgery or mindfulness and meditation, we can help women who are contending with this disease.”
Endometriosis is misunderstood. Myths abound about endometriosis, but the most common one is that the symptoms of pain and heavy periods are normal. “Women with this condition sometimes assume that their symptoms are a natural part of menstruation, and even when they do seek help, they could be dismissed as overreacting,” Dr. Howe said. “It is important that women – and their doctors – understand that this is not the case.”