Ever since first getting my period at the age of 12, I’d always had abnormal periods, but at the time didn’t think anything of it as I didn’t know any better. My natural periods ALWAYS went for 3-8 weeks. Yes you heard me… WEEKS. I would be in pain all of the time, no matter where I was in my cycle.
I went on the pill at 13 to see if it helped reduce the pain. One pill, turned to two, then three, four… five pills and 10 years later, all I gained from that was migraines, frustration, and no answers.
At the age of 23, I knew something wasn’t right. One night I experienced the worst pain I’d ever felt in my life. I was ready to go to emergency.
I went and saw my GP and explained my entire backstory and the pain I was in. I had ultrasounds done multiple times which always showed my uterus lining was always thicker than normal, which explained a lot of clots and heavy flow I experienced. Eventually I was referred me to my first gynaecologist, where I had my first laparoscopy and hysteroscopy… this is where my life started to change.
I was diagnosed with Stage IV endometriosis, and found out I have retrograde menstruation (where menstrual blood containing endometrial cells flows back through the fallopian tubes and into the pelvic cavity instead of out of my body). My endometriosis was everywhere, even as far going up as to reaching my diaphragm and lungs which is very rare.
Long story short that gyno was expensive and so I was referred to my second gyno, where we later had my second laparoscopy and hysteroscopy to remove as much endo as possible, whilst inserting the mirena as I was told it would be best for my case, seeing as though I had zero luck on all pill categories. I was informed we removed 90% of endo.
Nine months later, and my periods are heavily reduced thanks to the mirena. I’ve gone from 3-8 week periods, wearing three pads at a time changing every 2-3 hours, to only a nude liner and a period that goes for 4-7 days.
Though that’s a positive, unfortunately I am still in excruciating pain, all of the time. I and my GP believe as endometriosis is aggressive within my family that within nine months it’s grown back. I’m due to review my health with my gyno in the coming weeks.
So my story and journey with endometriosis doesn’t end here I’m afraid. But I have been told I’m a rare case and we are yet to truly conclude my story.