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Fibromyalgia: Remarkably Predictable!

Sometimes I feel as if I sound like a broken record. I’ll try to explain what I mean in this post. After weeks of trying to summon the energy (and find the time) to write something here, I find myself picking a familiar topic: fibromyalgia. Currently, I’m experiencing a flare-up of it. As any fibromyalgia patient can attest, this is not a pleasant state.


For longtime readers of my blog, it will come as no surprise that the change from summer to fall weather has triggered a flare-up for me. (I’ve written about this before in posts such as this and this).

The human brain is a curious thing. Sometimes we block things that are painful from our memories. For example, even though I have had a fibromyalgia flare-up every single fall for many consecutive years now, I must have somehow blocked last year’s fall flare-up out of my mind. This past summer, we were not able to do our typical 5-7 day summer trip due to scheduling challenges. We did manage to get away for 2 nights and 3 days. I’ve written before about some of the challenges I have had traveling due to chronic illnesses and pain. I did not do anything very strenuous during the trip and I took great care not to overdo things to the best of my ability. Nevertheless, the trip took a lot out of me.


Our summer trip occurred approximately a month later this year than in past summers. I was baffled when I just couldn’t seem to shake the greatly increased fatigue and pain that occurred following the trip. (I kept thinking to myself, “why is it taking so long to get back to where I was before the trip?”). Here’s where my “amnesia” comes in. Thanks to the trip occurring later this summer, my trip recovery ran right into the weather change from summer to fall. Therefore, I hadn’t recovered from the trip when the annual fibromyalgia flare-up kicked in.

Once I finally realized I was having a fibromyalgia flare-up, I couldn’t believe I hadn’t figured it out sooner. The thing is that the pain and fatigue I have after traveling feel very much like a fibromyalgia flare-up. The fibromyalgia flare-up timing (in retrospect) was actually very predictable. Apparently some part of my brain just didn’t want to remember or accept it.

In addition to the fibromyalgia flare-up, I have been experiencing more migraines again. I had been getting them much less frequently thanks to acupuncture. Unfortunately, they’ve been getting more frequent again (though not as bad as when they were at their most frequent/severe). Some were triggered by exposure to fragrances, some were tied to my cycle, and there were some for which I could find no explanation. In any event, my acupuncturist (who had moved on to tackling other issues) has been working on my migraines again and it is helping. (Migraines cause my blood pressure to spike significantly and I’ve had to tweak my blood pressure medication quite a bit lately).

In summary, I sometimes wonder if I sound like a broken record when I write a post like this. I know I’ve written similar posts about fibromyalgia and migraines in the past. My intention is not to bore anyone to tears! Sometimes it just helps to write about what I’m experiencing. Hopefully, by doing so I can help others who have similar situations to at least know they are not alone.


Thank you to my readers for your patience these last few months. I know that I’ve drastically reduced the number of posts I write and that there have been some people who have chosen to unsubscribe from my blog. That’s OK. I am doing my best and people need to do what works for them. I can absolutely understand why some people have elected to unsubscribe from my blog. At the same time, I just want those who have stuck with me for the ride to know that I do appreciate you tolerating my long absences from the online world. Between my personal life and my illnesses, I just haven’t been able to write at anywhere near the pace I had written at before. I hope that everyone is doing as well as possible and I miss talking with you on and off the blog.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


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RT @jeanneendo: "Fibromyalgia: Remarkably Predictable!"

October 9, 2013   2 Comments

Today Is World Suicide Prevention Day 2013

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day 2013. For more information about this worldwide event, please click on the banner below:


Please help end the stigma attached to suicide. Suicide is preventable. For more information about suicide prevention resources, please click the image below:


Click above for worldwide suicide prevention resources


For suicide prevention first aid resources in the United States, please click here:


Outside of the United States, please refer to the “worldwide suicide prevention resources” referenced earlier in this post.

Over the years, my blog has been visited by a large number of people who were searching online for information on topics such as “suicide and chronic pain”. I am acutely aware that the number of people living with chronic pain who occasionally have thoughts of suicide is significant. I have written about suicide prevention on this blog many times in the hope that it might help someone find the resources they need.

Please consider taking a moment out of your day today to spread the word about suicide prevention resources. Feel free to share this link on social media to help get the word out. Together we can help de-stigmatize suicide and get resources to the people who need them. If people are afraid to talk about suicidal thoughts, people who need resources may not access them.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

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RT @jeanneendo: "Today Is World Suicide Prevention Day 2013"

September 10, 2013   3 Comments

Time – And Fighting The “Guilt Monster”

Time. Sometimes it seems like we have so little time in which to accomplish so much. The number of tasks before us can just be overwhelming. We may wonder how we’re going to make it through the day.


Other times, the days may seem to stretch out and time feels like it’s passing slowly. Things can feel overwhelming in a different way. Perhaps grief or adversity have made time seem to “stand still”. In these cases, we may wonder how we’re going to get through the day for different reasons.

I’ve never had a rigid, strict writing schedule for this blog. I never committed to anyone (except maybe informally to myself) that I would post at any particular intervals. Nor did I ever commit to communicating “off the blog” via social media and such. When time allowed, I simply did so.

When my schedule was initially disrupted quite awhile back, it was very difficult for me to suddenly stop writing my blog. However, there were circumstances in my life that made it imperative for me to drastically reduce my time online. So I did. When that crisis calmed down a bit, I had hoped to return to some semblance of “normal” with blogging. However, other factors that were out of my control made this all-but-impossible.


Initially, I felt emotions such as guilt, anxiety, and concern. I felt guilt because I knew there were online contact people who had become accustomed to me being much more available; I didn’t want them to feel like I was ignoring them. I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I felt anxiety, in part, because I had become so accustomed to using my blog as an outlet that abruptly stopping my writing was difficult. I had concern because my blog receives a fair amount of traffic from people searching the Internet about suicide (often in the context of chronic illness/pain). I was concerned that if someone posted a message that sounded suicidal on my (moderated) blog that I might not see it in a timely fashion to be able to refer the person to appropriate resources in their area. Ever since I stopped my former blogging schedule, I have made it a point to go online as often as I possibly can for the purpose of scanning blog comments looking for anyone who might need referral information. Even when comments were backed up and not getting processed in a timely fashion, I made it a point to address these as quickly as possible.


Once I had devised a new system (however informally) for checking in on my blog when I could, I eventually made peace with the fact that it might be awhile before I could pick up where I left off. I later made peace with the fact that I might not ever be able to “pick up where I left off” (in the sense that I might instead have to “start from scratch”), after spending so much time away from my blog.

It wasn’t easy to make peace with all this after 5 years of writing this blog. As anyone who writes a blog knows, it’s about far more than just writing posts. Having spent a large amount of time “off the blog” relationship-building and interacting with fellow patients (on social media and such), it has been really challenging to stay offline. However, that’s where I have needed to be. So that’s where I’ve been.

We all deal with (and sometimes struggle with) time-related issues in this life. Too little time. Too much time. Things happening at just the right time… or things happening at the worst possible time.


Those of us living with chronic illness often have even greater struggles with time (and guilt) than others. After all, if your illness(es) result in it taking you longer to do certain things than the healthy people in your life, it all adds up. If trips to the doctor or pharmacy or lab take up a great deal of time, that affects the total amount of time available to spend on other things.


Any person living with chronic illness who has ever battled over the phone with health insurance companies or fought to appeal an unfairly rejected claim can attest to the large amounts of time that illness-related activities can suck up. Even once one has factored in all of the more obvious illness-related drains on time, when one looks at activities that aren’t so obviously linked to illness it becomes clear that the effects are more pervasive than many people realize.


If there is anyone out there living with chronic illness who is feeling guilty about what he or she can’t do, if there is anyone feeling anxious about a never ending to-do list, or if there is anyone out there worrying about how his/her illness (or actions/inactions) might negatively impact others… please do yourself a favor and accept the fact that the “guilt monster” won’t do anyone any good. Guilt can really drain your energy. This can, in turn, exacerbate your condition. If you’re doing your best (and I don’t mean pushing yourself past healthy limits), realize your best is all you can do.

If you are feeling anxious about the length of your to-do list, try to ascertain what might make it feel less overwhelming. Can you ask someone for help? Can you disregard items from the list that aren’t as important as you initially thought? Can you break the list down into smaller pieces that feel more manageable? Everyone’s unique. Do what works for you. Often, you will know yourself best and you will be the person to figure out how to feel less anxious. Sometimes it may take a bit of trial and error. As far as worrying about negatively impacting others is concerned, remind yourself that you have a great deal on your plate if you live with a chronic illness and that you need to focus on self-care before you can effectively help others.


All you can do is your best. This circles back to the guilt I mentioned earlier. Beating yourself up about not doing this or that for someone else – when you weren’t healthy enough to do so – isn’t helpful for anyone. It’s actually a waste of precious energy to fret over things that are out of your control. Give yourself permission to assess when you’ve done your best and to resist any feelings of guilt that occur past that point. Feeling guilty about not being able to do something you can’t do (or can’t do without making yourself sicker) isn’t helpful for anyone.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


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RT @jeanneendo: "Time – And Fighting The “Guilt Monster”"

September 7, 2013   No Comments

Father’s Day And Infertility: A Rough Weekend For Many


While I am all too aware that there is nothing anyone can magically do or say to ease the pain infertile couples may experience around holidays such as Father’s Day, the link below may be useful for some:


My thoughts are with those who are headed, in a couple of days, into a potentially difficult and emotionally painful weekend.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

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RT @jeanneendo: "Father’s Day And Infertility: A Rough Weekend For Many"

June 13, 2013   2 Comments

Five Years Of Blogging!


Here’s to five years of blogging – and five more where that came from. I never dreamed when I started writing a blog that I’d learn so much and meet so many people from around the world!


I am very grateful for having had the opportunity to get to know so many wonderful people over this last five years. Thank you all for your ongoing support, feedback, and friendship!



This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

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RT @jeanneendo: "Five Years Of Blogging!"

June 1, 2013   No Comments

Mother’s Day Message

Struggling with infertility and feeling anxiety about Mother’s Day? You are not alone.


You may find this the RESOLVE page (which includes tips on coping with holidays) helpful:


In the past few days, I have noticed some of the posts here on my blog from prior Mother’s Days have been receiving quite a few visitors. I will include a couple of them here for anyone who may find them helpful. It’s important for those struggling with infertility to know they are not alone in their struggle:



If you are struggling with infertility, miscarriage or pregnancy loss please know that however isolated you may feel, you are not alone. There are many others dealing with similar struggles. While this may not be any consolation, some people find it helpful to know that they are not alone.

If you know someone who is struggling with these issues, please be aware that today may be especially challenging. Whether the person/couple you know needs space, a listening ear, or just simply to know that you sincerely care will depend on the person/couple and the situation. What is most helpful to one person will be different for another.

If you have a friend or loved one who is struggling with these issues, please try to be there for them in whatever way you can. If you’re unsure of how to support the person/couple, ask what you can do to be supportive (if anything). If you’re asked to give space (a.k.a. to do nothing right now), do that. If you are asked to support in some other way, please do what you can to do so. Your friend or loved one will likely appreciate your efforts to be compassionate and supportive.

My thoughts go out to everyone who is struggling with this holiday. Please know that there are many people who do care.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

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RT @jeanneendo: "Mother’s Day Message"

May 12, 2013   No Comments

Getting Back On Track!

The five year anniversary of me starting a blog will be in about three weeks. In all of that time, the longest I’ve gone without writing has been recently. It definitely hasn’t been easy for me to step away from it but there have been various reasons that I couldn’t maintain the pace I had set before. I am hopeful that I’ll get things back on track as soon as possible.


It really bothered me that I was unable to be active online this year for Endometriosis Awareness Month. Little did I know when I posted that short video on March 1st that it would be my only March post! Sometimes we just can’t predict what life will throw at us, though. So – as I’ve said before – I try to speak out for endometriosis awareness, as best I can, throughout the year.

Aside from managing my own illnesses, I have been spending time helping a relative who was recently hospitalized, I’ve been helping other family members with various issues, I did some volunteer work that I was “recruited” for, and I was summoned for jury duty.


I have written many times about the importance of pacing and the frustration I feel when I am unable to write regularly on this blog . While I have missed the time I’ve recently had away from this blog, I know that I needed that time to focus on other activities.

In recent weeks, I have been dealing with the same type of fibromyalgia flare-up I get every year when winter turns to spring. While my migraines have been less frequent and less severe since I’ve been getting acupuncture for them, I’ve still had some.

In regard to jury duty, it was an interesting experience. I have been summoned for jury duty many times over the years (far more than most people I know). The last time I was called, I was extremely sick and it was out of the question for me to go in. My doctor had written a letter that excused me from jury duty.


This time when I was summoned, I really stopped to ponder whether I thought I could do it or not. Without a doubt I am still in poor health. My fibromyalgia has been flaring and it really hurts to sit still in one spot for any length of time. That one illness alone would make jury duty a challenge. At the same time, I am not in the very dire shape I was in when I was last summoned. So, I discussed the summons with my primary care physician. She was fully prepared to write me another letter (and she’s not one to take writing such letters lightly); she knows how sick I am and how difficult it would be for me to sit still for so long without moving/stretching and to have infrequent access to a rest room (considering that my interstitial cystitis can cause severe bladder pain and make for unpredictable timing as far as the need for a rest room).


However, I look at jury duty as an important civic duty – like voting. I wanted to give it a shot if I thought I might be able to do it. So, she advised me to take advantage of the time to talk with the attorneys privately about my concerns (rest room access and avoiding exposure to fragrances were the two things I was most worried about). I had been through the voir dire process once before and was already planning on talking with the attorneys privately before my doctor suggested it. So, I screwed up my courage and took a pass on the note from my doctor.

My jury summons number was low. So I knew from past experience I would be called in on the first day. Sure enough, when I called the automated message it said to report the next morning. To make a very long story short, I ended up being one of the people called to sit in “the box” to be questioned by the attorneys. The judge had given some basic details about the case. It was a medical malpractice case that was expected to last two weeks! At this point, I will be perfectly honest and say that I started to wonder if I’d made a mistake passing up that note. However, I patiently waited for the opportunity to speak with the attorneys privately. This came at the very end of the first day. (I will say that I wasn’t sure how I would make it to the lunch break that first day; my bladder was not happy)!

© Jenny Rollo

The private discussion with the attorneys enabled me to share my concerns. In addition to explaining my concerns regarding rest room access (mainly because of IC) and worries about fragrances (and their potential to trigger migraines or even make me faint due to MCS), I had to fill them in on the 2008 surgery I had – which did not go as intended and which has resulted in permanent damage to my left leg (long story). After listening all day to questions pertaining to the medical malpractice case (where a man is now disabled following knee surgery that did not go as planned), I knew that I needed to disclose my own history with having had surgery that has resulted in lifelong damage to the nerves in my leg. We were instructed to return the next day and then I was excused by lunchtime the second day. I have no doubt that my leg situation made me an unwanted juror for that particular case. The good part was that I had the satisfaction of knowing that I had done my best and given it a shot. While there would have been absolutely nothing wrong with me being more cautious and having simply accepted a note from my doctor, I’m glad that I gave it my best shot.


In any event, I am really thankful (and lucky!) that the long stretches where I haven’t posted anything here have not resulted in people unsubscribing from my blog. On the rare occasions I’ve hopped online long enough to take a look at my blog statistics, the traffic has not dipped down in any kind of significant way. I can see that people are still reading my blog even when the most recent post is outdated. I can’t begin to express how grateful I am that people have been so patient and understanding. It’s too soon to tell when I’ll be able to get back on track the way I really want to but I am making every effort to do so.


In less than a month, it will be five years from when I started blogging. The thoughtful people I’ve met – through this blog, through my YouTube channel (which I really need to update more often!) and through social media – continue to amaze me. Thank you very much for your ongoing support and patience!


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

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RT @jeanneendo: "Getting Back On Track!"

May 7, 2013   4 Comments

March: Endometriosis Awareness Month


GoPetition



This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

New to blog commenting? Just click “comments” below post. (If you set up a Gravatar, your picture will show when you comment).

RT @jeanneendo: "March: Endometriosis Awareness Month"

March 2, 2013   2 Comments

Endometriosis Patients Deserve Better

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, it does. One of my readers was kind enough to draw my attention to a “study”. It was published by the fine folks who brought the world the article that I referenced in my last post. (See this post about a “study” on endometriosis that many people found objectionable). Anyhow, the following “study” effectively rubs salt in patients’ wounds. The abstract only is below:

“You are so beautiful”*: behind women’s attractiveness towards the biology of reproduction: a narrative review.

I am unable to post the full article for copyright reasons. Not that I would want it posted on my blog anyway. (Seriously, it’s that bad). The full “research” article was published in Gynecological Endocrinology. As with the previous “study”, I was fortunate enough to gain access to the full article via a friend who is a university employee. Trust me when I say that I am very grateful not to have paid to read the full article referenced above. Personally, I find it beyond disturbing that a gynecological medical journal would publish such an article.


If these articles are what passes for medical research, we have a serious problem. As the reader who made me aware of the second article pointed out, it’s a good idea for people to write in to express their outrage. Unfortunately, I have been occupied offline to the point that it took me over two months to write another (this) post. Therefore, I haven’t had an opportunity to do so as of yet.

While I don’t have any specific addresses for the medical journals that have published these articles, the first article I wrote about was in Fertility and Sterility and this other article was published in Gynecological Endocrinology. While I haven’t had the opportunity to personally investigate funding sources, it’s my understanding (from one of my readers) that the University of Milan School of Medicine was involved in the funding of at least one of these studies. (I urge you to do your own investigation before writing in to ensure that you have the facts).


I believe these “studies” are a disservice for endometriosis patients and others. The bottom line is that if you are looking for a way of speaking out against these “studies”, I agree with the reader who pointed out that writing in is a good idea.

While I wish I had more energy to act myself, I have been in basic functioning mode lately. After having recovered almost completely from the flu, I came down with some other virus. It has taken me awhile to find the time and energy to write this. While I could have expended a similar amount of energy writing to the medical journals and university about these “studies”, I decided I might be more effective, at this time, writing about the “studies” here. My hope is that some of you will gain access to the original articles (rather than just the abstracts) and consider writing letters to the journals concerned expressing your thoughts about these “studies” being published. I also hope someone will take the time to verify that the university named above was a source of funding before writing to it to express your displeasure about the university’s support of such an endometriosis “study”.


While I hope to write some letters myself when I get the energy, I would really appreciate it if any of you who take the time to do so could be so kind as to post a comment to let me and others reading this know that you’ve done so. Personally, I find the “studies” misguided and insulting. There is such a massive need for endometriosis research. It saddens me greatly that there is an entire team of “researchers” who repeatedly publish such “studies” that insult endometriosis patients rather than help them.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


If you’re like me, you find online shopping a helpful alternative. Thank you for supporting my blog by using my Amazon ads. I appreciate your support! ;)

New to blog commenting? Just click “comments” below post. (If you set up a Gravatar, your picture will show when you comment).

RT @jeanneendo: "Endometriosis Patients Deserve Better"

February 12, 2013   No Comments

REALLY?!? Is THIS Truly Your Idea Of Meaningful Endometriosis Research?

For anyone who isn’t familiar with the “REALLY?!?” skits on Saturday Night Live, I’m including a video clip with an example of one here. When I became aware yesterday of a newly published endometriosis study, these type of skits just popped into my head.



For me, sometimes humor is the single best antidote when something really gets under my skin. So, I guess it’s not too surprising that an SNL skit ran through my head while I was reading about the recently published endometriosis study I mentioned earlier. One of the first things I did I after I saw something about the study was email my friend Endochick.

It is a common occurrence for me to run endometriosis-related items by her when I find them upsetting. I find it helpful to see if she shares my perspective when such situations arise. The study came to my attention because I received a Google alert email notification for it. (She and I are each signed up for Google alerts for articles that mention the word “endometriosis”. Subscribing to these alerts is a means of staying in the loop on endometriosis news). In any event, she had seen the recently published endometriosis study before I emailed her. When I shared my “REALLY?!?” reaction to it, she had a very similar reaction.


At this point, I suppose it’s about time for me to share some information about the endometriosis study I found so objectionable (not to mention objectifying!) The study is called (and I swear to you all that I am not making this title up!): Attractiveness of women with rectovaginal endometriosis: a case-control study. That’s right. The word “attractiveness” is literally in the name of the endometriosis study. (Feel free to pause at this juncture to marvel, let your jaw drop, or swear). The preceding link will only get you to the abstract for the study. (Those wishing to read the entire study are required pay $31.50 to access it).

Needless to say, there is absolutely no way I was going to pay $31.50 to read the full article when it was very evident from the title alone that it would really make me angry! If money were no object, I’d still have no desire to financially support such “research” by paying to access the article. As anyone who knows me can probably guess, I still wanted to get my hands on the full study. The title and a peek at the abstract were not enough. I wanted to see the entire article before writing about it here. Reading online summaries of it just isn’t the same as reading the source article. Thankfully, a thoughtful friend of mine had the ability to access it. So, I was able to read the full article about the study (that was inexplicably published in Fertility and Sterility). I won’t attempt to do an in-depth analysis of the study. Instead, I will share (as briefly as possible) my perspective on the value (or complete lack thereof) of a study such as this one. Obviously, I am not able to publish the full study here for legal reasons.


Let’s just say that the full article was every bit as revolting as I had anticipated. While I was preparing to write this post, I came across the following hilarious article about the study: A study rating female attractiveness: the journal Fertility and Sterility publishes misogyny. Let me clarify why it was funny to me. In part, it made me laugh out loud because one of the great many things I ranted about in my email to Endochick was that I found this study to be misogynistic. So, when I happened upon Dr. Jen Gunter’s characterization of the endometriosis study, I found her words humorous and validating as well.

Here are just a few of the things that ran through my mind when I learned of this study regarding the attractiveness of endometriosis patients. Why not study prevention of endometriosis? Why not find the cause(s) of it? Why not study how to improve the treatment options for the millions of women and girls living with endometriosis? Why not study improving fertility in those endometriosis patients struggling with infertility? Heck, why not (gasp) study to find a cure for endometriosis?

To wrap things up here, I’m going to respond to this study (Attractiveness of women with rectovaginal endometriosis: a case-control study) — “REALLY?!?”-style. The study article was 7 pages long. I’ll try to make this as painless as possible.


It’s “REALLY?!?” time…


(1) The doctors who conducted the research for the aforementioned study looked at what age the study participants first had sexual intercourse. (Having read it in context, I can tell you that this was part of their “attractiveness of endometriosis patients” theorizing).

REALLY?!? — Sigh. You think that studying when women first had sexual intercourse is a meaningful use of your time – when you claim to be studying endometriosis? I think not. Please see the paragraph I posted earlier for some ideas of better uses for your endometriosis research time.

(2) The title of the study is: “Attractiveness of women with rectovaginal endometriosis: a case-control study”.

REALLY?!?That is your study’s article title? Wow, you’re not even trying to disguise the fact that the main focus of your “research” was to have yourselves (a handful of doctors) literally “rate” women’s “attractiveness” on a graded scale?! I have a question for you. Have you ever watched that movie about the allegedly shady origins of Facebook? You know… The one where people were rating students on campus based on their physical appearance using the software that was allegedly some sort of prototype for what we now know as Facebook? That’s what this rating of women’s appearance reminds me of. You’re doctors. Don’t you have medical training that equips you to conduct meaningful studies using scientific methods? Have you no shame?

(3) From the study (in the conclusion section): “Women with rectovaginal endometriosis were judged to be more attractive than those in the two control groups. Moreover, they had a leaner silhouette, larger breasts, and an earlier coitarche”.

REALLY?!? — After all of the time and effort you put into this endometriosis research study, this conclusion (and it is word for word from the study, people) is the best that you can produce? The fruits of all your labors on this study are summarized in the two sentences above? REALLY?!? This truly was the focus of your “endometriosis research” study? Nothing about prevention of endometriosis, improving treatment options for patients, finding clues that could lead to a cure for endometriosis? Just a focus on where the endometrial implants were located in the women judged to be “more attractive”, who had larger breasts, who had a leaner silhouette, and when the women from each of the groups first had sexual intercourse?



While I can’t post the entire study, I can post some quotes from it. So here are a few. Brace yourselves. Bear in mind that these are direct quotes from the endometriosis study published in Fertility and Sterility. I include them here because I think they provide some extra insight beyond my “ranting” into the ridiculousness of the use of time and energy by these researchers (for those who haven’t read the full study):

Some endometriosis study quotes that boggle my mind:

“However, in order to limit potential unintentional seductive behaviors that might have swayed the raters’ judgment, information on the specific hypothesis of different degrees of attractiveness in the three study groups was not given in advance of the physical evaluation”.

“This finding could be explained by higher attractiveness and, hence, higher male sexual demand, even in the adolescent phase”.

“As an example, a higher breast-to-underbreast ratio (large breasts) might have been more attractive to male than female raters”.

Endometriosis researchers/doctors can do better than this. They must. Endometriosis research that improves quality of life for patients while searching doggedly for clues as to cause(s) of endometriosis and while diligently searching for a cure absolutely must take precedence over research that instead focuses on the physical appearance and sex lives of patients!! Seriously, I don’t understand how a study like this even gets funded. Let alone published in a major medical journal. In the meantime, millions of women and girls the world over are living with this serious illness. A study such as this not only misses looking at the many crucial topics of interest to anyone serious about researching endometriosis but it takes resources away from looking at what truly needs to be studied.

I can think of many useful topics for endometriosis researchers to investigate. Studies that focus on the physical appearance of endometriosis patients do not make that list. I find it offensive that doctors at a university are conducting such research and I find it even more appalling that a medical journal such as Fertility and Sterility is giving the study legs by publishing it.

At the risk of sounding redundant, I will ask again… Why not study prevention of endometriosis? Why not find the cause(s) of it? Why not study how to improve the treatment options for the millions of women and girls living with endometriosis? Why not study improving fertility in those endometriosis patients struggling with infertility? Heck, why not (gasp) study to find a cure for endometriosis?

The women and girls living with this illness deserve better than this. An endometriosis study where doctors spend time rating physical attractiveness is not my idea of a meaningful use of time or resources. We deserve better than this.


This post was written by Jeanne at http://chronichealing.com. Copyright © Jeanne — chronichealing.com. All rights reserved.


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RT @jeanneendo: "REALLY?!? Is THIS Truly Your Idea Of Meaningful Endometriosis Research?"

December 1, 2012   18 Comments