Getting Much Needed Surgery for #Endometriosis

UPDATE: My fundraising campaign has launched!

HopeMob Fundraiser

Greetings, fam. As most of you know, I have Stage IV endometriosis. I found out because an ovarian cyst landed me in the ER. Three times. Via surgery, I found out my particular case includes bowel endometriosis, with adhesions that have fused my colon to my uterus and cul-de-sac. I write this post as I recover from another battle with what I’ve endearingly termed #gutsofire.

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endo also causes spelling mistakes. #thismakessense.

 

Well, this morning, I got up, did my sun salutations, and took my vitamins with a customary glass of water. I cut my hair and tweezed my eyebrows so I’d show up to my second round field placement interview looking human. Just as I prepared to shower, #gutsofire decided it was primetime. Usually, this happens for one of two reasons:

  1. I unsuspectingly trigger one of the bagillion food allergies that have developed as a result of the endo.
  2. I’ve been plugging along through a couple weeks of constipation (yes, weeks – I even have constipation pants to accommodate the extra girth).

Well, I hadn’t haven’t eaten yet this morning today* and I’ve actually had a few BMs over the past week (\o/), so I don’t think I was constipated. But maybe I was. Or maybe just endometriosis. At any rate, getting sick caused me to miss my interview. Fortunately, my prospective supervisor was very gracious & we’re rescheduled for Monday. (It really sucks having to explain an ‘invisible illness’ to professors and supervisors.)

I haven’t mentioned about this much on here, but my surgeon said my case is the worst she’d seen in her career. There were implants all over my pelvic cavity – on all my organs except my stomach & appendix. While the doctor was able to clean me up, she could not do anything about the endometriosis on my organs or about anything that’s fused together. I also have a cyst on my uterus. She couldn’t remove that, either, not due to impossibility, but due to her own comfort level. I appreciate her not experimenting in my pelvic cavity. She did say, however, “Should you ever need any more surgery, you need to go to the guy who invented it. His name is Camran Nezhat, here’s his website.”**

At any rate, it’s coming up on a year after my surgery and my ovary still hurts when I ovulate each month. I also still don’t poop correctly, although that’s gotten better since started purifying myself from the evils of Seasonale.^ But the #gutsofire remain. And well, who wants their intestines fused to their uterus, or anything else for that matter? So I tweeted @CNezhatMD. He told me to email him. I submitted my medical records & >>fast forward>>

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How fitting for #EndometriosisAwareness Month, eh?

So this is where I need your help. Dr. Nezhat is actually within my healthcare network, but as you can see, his practice is in California. I live in Chicago. Also: I’m in grad school. I’m planning to have my surgery in mid-June, partly because I’m waiting for the school year to end, but mostly because I need to raise the money for this surgery. So far, I know I will need $2500 for the surgical assistants’ fee. I don’t know what my total is just yet, except that it will be significantly more than $2500, especially once I add in airfare & lodging. Since it will take some time to raise the funds and figure out the insurance, I wanted to give people the heads up. I’m applying to HopeMob to do the crowdfunding, and will update the blog as soon as the details roll in.

Overall, I’m quite excited about this. I truly admire Dr. Nezhat’s work and he’s able to fix things other surgeons cannot. This seems like a win, all around. Thanks for reading & please stay tuned.

 

*It’s taken forever to write this post. Shall we play “Count the Chairnaps”?

**(My surgeon has minimal bedside manner. I wasn’t sure she ever smiled until my 3-month post-op ultrasound. She was so excited about how my ovaries looked that she almost did a jig. It was incredibly cute!)

^It’s not listed here, but a little known fact: hormonal birth control can cause or contribute to constipation. Found that out from my other provider.

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