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Tag Archives: endometriosis

Worst Period Story: It was so bad the doctors gave me MORPHINE!

This is a true story of endometriosis and contains details that may not be suitable for younger readers.

vancouver ambulance

Reader Submission
Jenni Rempel writes:

I was at home when my period started and right away I headed to the bathroom. I had horrible cramps and really had to go to the bathroom, but each time I tried I was just left feeling constipated. I was in so much pain I couldn’t see straight. I laid down on the bathroom rug and closed my eyes.

When I work up I had leaked all over the rug and left a big red stain. I was so bloated and had so much abdominal pain that it hurt even to wear underwear. I felt like there was nothing I could do! I asked my boyfriend to call the ambulance.

I was in so much pain I had to go to the ER.

At the ER is was a busy day and the chair I had to sit in was broken. It hurt too much to sit down so I laid on the floor. Then I threw up right there in the middle of the hallway.

I have always been really scared of needles and hadn’t even had a blood test in several years. On this day I was in so much pain that I was hurting too much to be scared. I let them do a blood test and then they put an IV in and gave me antibiotics for a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) before giving me a full course of morphine for the pain. I finally started to feel a bit better so they said I could go home but I had to come back for a week of IV antibiotics to treat this UTI.

I thought my Mom would understand and come help me but she said I should suck it up and refused to come get me from the hospital. Finally she agreed to come pick me up but she was very angry at me for making such a big deal out of my period. When we got home my Mom yelled at my for leaving a period stain on the bathroom rug. So ontop of being so physically sick I also felt very sad that my Mom was being so mean.

Even though my Mom didn’t understand, I am now more informed about period pain and women’s health. I later found out that the cause of my pain and problems was not a UTI but was Endometriosis, a chronic disease.

Period pain and problems are nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of and if you or someone you know had painful periods that interfere with their daily life it may be a sign of a medical problem or condition. I hope no one else has to have an experience like mine, worst period ever!

Learn more about Jenni's endometriosis surgery fundraiser

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Worst Period Story: I leaked at a celebrity party!

Reader Submission
Jenni Rempel writes:

I had just had the worst period ever but figured it was just a fluke incident.

I was scheduled to volunteer at this fancy fundraiser party at this vacation destination. The party was a 3 hours drive away and I had been assigned to go with this guy I had never met before.

There were going to be celebrities there and I was supposed to take photos so I was pretty excited.

Just my luck, I woke up the morning of the party with my period.

Right away I started to have very painful cramps and felt nauseous. I tried to breathe deeply and took some over-the-counter pain medication on the drive over.

pristine-bathroomAfter sitting in the car for 3 hours we reached the location of the party. I stood up and felt this huge gush as all the flow from the 3 hour car ride was pulled down by gravity. I immediately went to the bathroom to change my pad and tampon.

The bathroom was all white! The towels were white, the toilet was white, everything was white, and very very clean.

I felt so embarrassed to be dumping all of this menstrual blood in this oddly pristine washroom.

As the party started I continued to feel sicker and more nauseous. I started to get weak in the knees. I went back to the bathroom and this time was in so much pain I actually passed out on the floor.

Someone eventually knocked on the door loudly and I woke up to discover there was a long line of people waiting to use the washroom. I had also leaked through my fancy dress onto the white floor of this white coloured washroom.

I was mortified! I wiped it up and put a sweater around my waist to hide any stains on my dress. And everyone I knew at the party was a guy so I didn’t even have any other girls to help me out.

I tried to avoid all of the celebrities because I didn’t want them to see anything embarrassing. And then after all that I had to take another 3 hour drive home with this guy I didn’t know very well. Worst period ever!

I keep having painful periods like this and was eventually diagnosed with Endometriosis (link to: http://www.theperiodblog.com/guide-to-periods/endometriosis-everything-you-need-to-know/), a painful chronic disease.

Learn more about Jenni's endometriosis surgery fundraiser

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Worst Period Story: I had to go to the hospital!

Reader Submission
Jenni Rempel writes:

I was 21 and had just moved to NYC to do a summer internship. I was living in an intern apartment with my first-ever roommate and was a little embarrassed about having my period around someone I didn’t know well.

I had bought a Diva Cup to use during my trip but had never tried it before. So my period started and I went to try the Diva Cup for the first time, but I couldn’t get it in right! I tried about 5 times until it finally stayed but it didn’t feel like it was inserted correctly.

My roommate and I had to run off to an event we were volunteering at so I figured it was good enough and decided to just leave.

Once we got on the subway I started to feel really bad cramps and got very woozy. Then I started to get a fever and needed to lie down. By the time we reached our stop I couldn’t stand anymore and needed to go to the bathroom, badly. I was feeling really bad so I parted ways with my roommate and switched trains to go home.

I even laid down on the subway bench (luckily it was a Sunday morning and the train wasn’t crowded) on the way back. When I got back to the stop near my house I was so weak I could barely move. I had to crawl up the stairs to the subway exit.

I hobbled into the first place I saw, which was an IHOP restaurant, and asked to use the bathroom. At first they wouldn’t let me because I had to buy something in order to use the washroom. I was so woozy and in so much pain I couldn’t think straight and collapsed on the waiting bench.

I finally asked for a bottle of water, gave her $20 and was allowed to go to the washroom. I tried to go to the bathroom but I was very constipated.

DivaCup Model 1 Review & Photos

DivaCup Model 1 Review & Photos

It took me about 10 minutes to get the Diva Cup out and it was almost full of blood when I removed it. I had never had a very heavy period before so I was pretty surprised and concerned to see this.

Even after I took the cup out and tried to use the washroom I was still in so much pain which continued to get worse.

Because I was new in the city I didn’t really know anybody to ask for help, but I knew I was too sick to climb the stairs to my apartment or walk home. The hostess came into the washroom to check on me and I asked her to call an ambulance.

As the paramedics took me away the hostess gave me my bottle of water and change. She really wanted me to buy something!

I ended up taking an ambulance to the hospital where I was diagnosed with “unidentified gastritis”.

Afterwards I keep having painful periods like this and was eventually diagnosed with Endometriosis a painful chronic disease. Talk about the worst period ever!

Learn more about Jenni's endometriosis surgery fundraiser

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Jenni Rempel’s Endometriosis Story – Surgery Fundraiser

My periods were pretty irregular and uneventful until turned 21 when I suddenly had cramps so painful I ended up in the hospital.

When I was a teen and growing up people used to tell me that period pain was normal and something all women deal with.

I remember some girls at school would use it as an excuse to skip gym class but I never knew there could be a disease or serious problem that could cause periods to be extremely painful.

I always thought cramps were normal and that everyone has period pain, but now I know better.

Did you know?
Painful periods and extreme cramps that cause you to miss school/work or interfere with your life are not normal. They may be a symptom of endometriosis or other health problems. Learn More.

I had never heard of Endometriosis or endo until I became sick myself and started having extreme period pain and other abnormal symptoms like vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, and other flu-like symptoms with my period.

My periods also became very heavy, which was unusual for me. In my family it was taboo to discuss periods so I was also really embarrassed about the medical problems I was having.

Now I know that chronic diseases like endometriosis are nothing to be ashamed of. No one knows what causes endometriosis for sure but it certainly isn’t anyone’s fault.

I have also found it so difficult to get help for this disease because there is such a lack of information out there. My local library only has one book on the topic! I have seen several different doctors and many of them have told me there is nothing they can do for me.

That is why I am campaigning to raise awareness about Endometriosis and funds so that I can have laparoscopic excision surgery. You can learn more about my story and campaign here:

Learn more about Jenni's endometriosis surgery fundraiser

With Endometriosis, every period is the worst period ever. For myself and many others the pain and symptoms only get worse over time.

I hope one day there is a cure for this disease, and until then I hope we can continue to raise awareness so that no one ever think rehabilitating pain is “normal”.

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As of August 1, 2015, Jenni has raised almost half of the cost of her surgery! Please help her by donating to reach her goal.

Endometriosis: Everything You Need To Know

Jump to a section
What Is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis Symptoms
What Causes Endometriosis?
Endometriosis Diagnosis
Endometriosis Treatment
Endometriosis Resources

What Is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a chronic disease that affects approximately 1 in 10 women, and even some men.

Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to the lining of the uterus called the endometrium, grows abnormally elsewhere in the body.

Endometriosis lesions or growths are most commonly found within the pelvis, but they can be found almost anywhere in the body.

Endometriosis is challenging because it often takes a long time to diagnose – on average, 8 to 12 years. This is because many doctors are not familiar with the signs and symptoms of endometriosis.

It is important to educate all girls and young women about endometriosis, so that they know what is considered normal, and what might be a sign of a problem.

Endometriosis Symptoms
menstrual cramps

Many teenagers have discomfort with their periods (and adults too); however, any pain or discomfort that disrupts your life and prevents you from participating in school, social activities, work, or sports, is not considered normal.

Period pain should be manageable with over-the-counter medications such as Aleve or Advil.

If it is not, and you have some of the symptoms listed below, it might be time to talk to your doctor about the possibility of endometriosis.

  • Pain symptoms that are disabling or increasingly painful menstrual cycles, severe menstrual cramps, or chronic pelvic pain, and/or pain with sexual activity
  • Bowel symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, abdominal bloating, nausea and vomiting, and painful bowel movements, especially if these symptoms vary according to your menstrual cycle
  • Bladder symptoms such as bladder pain, pain with urination, or frequent urination

About 35 percent of women with endometriosis also have infertility or recurrent pregnancy loss.

What Causes Endometriosis?
What causes endometriosis to develop is not well understood, but there are probably multiple contributing factors including genetic, developmental, environmental, and possibly problems in the functioning of the immune system.

Endometriosis Diagnosis
To see and identify the endometriosis lesions, a surgical procedure called a laparoscopy is required. Laparoscopy is a surgery that uses a thin, lighted tube with a camera that is put through a cut (incision) in the belly to look at your pelvic area.

This same procedure can also be used to treat endometriosis by excising (cutting out) the lesions.

Unfortunately there are no non-invasive tests for endometriosis yet. There are no blood tests that can diagnose endometriosis, and endometriosis is only sometimes seen by ultrasound or MRI. That is why laparoscopy is required in order to make the diagnosis of endometriosis.

laparascopy

Endometriosis Treatment

There are many options for treating endometriosis; however, there is no cure for endometriosis yet.

The most effective treatment for endometriosis is surgical removal (called excision) of the endometriosis lesions.
However, many patients find they get the best results by combining endometriosis surgery with natural approaches that enhance their wellness.

There are also medications that may help treat the symptoms. None of the medications can actually get rid of endometriosis growths, so usually once the medication is stopped, the symptoms return.
Mirena-iud
Commonly used medications include:

  • Birth control pills
  • Mirena IUD
  • Lupron
  • Anti-inflammatories such as Advil or Aleve

Birth control pills, the Mirena IUD, and Lupron are all hormonal treatments aimed at suppressing the menstrual cycle, and thus, suppressing the endometriosis symptoms. These treatments work for some patients but are usually not very effective long term.

Anti-inflammatory medications are often used to relieve the inflammation and pain resulting from endometriosis, and sometimes additional pain medications, or other symptom-relieving medications are used as needed.

Many patients find additional alternative or complementary medical approaches helpful. Diet changes, exercise (an appropriate type that doesn’t worsen symptoms for you—even just walking), pelvic physical therapy, acupuncture, and naturopathic medicine can all help manage symptoms.

In addition, stress management is extremely important for any person suffering with a chronic disease.
yoga-pose
Various approaches can be used successfully, but the key is to practice regularly. Choose something you enjoy, and do it every day!

Stress management possibilities include:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Tai chi
  • Qigong (a traditional Chinese moving meditation practice)
  • Guided imagery/visualization
  • Relaxation exercises/breathing exercises

Endometriosis Resources
If you want to learn more about endometriosis, there are many online resources available to learn more, or get support from other endometriosis patients.

However, choose your sources of information carefully, as there is a lot of misinformation about endometriosis on the internet. Some good sources of accurate information and support include: