Jan 2021

Erasing Endometriosis Myths

  • By: Samantha Denäe

The myths that surround Endometriosis are astounding. Whether it be as small as hair type or as grand as racial bias, what people believe about Endometriosis can be misconstrued as fact and can cause a prolonged diagnosis in women. Let’s dispel some myths about living with Endometriosis. 

1. MYTH: Endometriosis is a “Rich White Woman’s disease”. 

FACT: Endometriosis affects an estimate of 1 in 10 women worldwide and is growing steadily. Some believe women with Endometriosis are extremely ambitious career women who tend to have a particular economic status and who typically do not want children until their late 30s. This myth can cause women who do not meet these criteria to be diagnosed at a later time in their lives, usually when they are looking to bare children. Women of color, especially Black women, are more likely to be misdiagnosed or not be diagnosed when expressing their symptoms revolving their reproductive health. 

2. MYTH: Endometriosis is the endometrium.

FACT: There are resources that refer to endometriosis as the “endometrium”, the lining of the uterus outside of the uterus. Endometriosis specialists have concluded that “Endometriosis is when endometrium-like tissue occurs and is found outside the uterus”. Distinguishing the difference between “endometrium” and “endometrium-like” shows us that the tissue causing Endometriosis acts like the endometrium, possibly causing confusion when trying to diagnose. We must understand that the Endometriosis tissue does not exit the body when it’s being thickened and broken down during the menstrual cycle as the endometrium does. 

3. MYTH: Hysterectomy is a cure.

FACT: There is no cure for Endometriosis. If you’ve received a hysterectomy or know someone who has to combat Endometriosis symptoms, most will say the pain almost always comes back after about six months to a year. Because Endometriosis is hard to diagnose, finding a cure is even harder. Hysterectomies, as well as ablations do not cure Endometriosis pain. Be absolutely sure a hysterectomy is what you want before opting to have one. Also be sure that you are not being coerced into having a hysterectomy by your doctor. 

4. MYTH: You must be of tall statue. 

FACT: Anyone, regardless of height, can be affected by Endometriosis. If there are roughly 176 million women who are diagnosed with Endometriosis, what are chances that all of them are considered “tall in statue”? Risk factors like this are harmful and can definitely lead to a prolonged diagnosis. There are plenty of women who suffer from Endo that are between the height of 5’1 – 5’8. Endometriosis isn’t picky depending on factors such as this.

5. MYTH: You must have blonde/brunette hair.

FACT: Another silly myth that not only is harmful to Endometriosis warriors in diagnosis, but also a bit of racial bias. Women of color typically are not naturally blonde or brunette, thus keeping up with the myth that Endometriosis typically plagues women of Caucasian ethnicity.  

Endometriosis does not discriminate. Let's do our best to dispel myths when we hear them.

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