Woman Told To Get Pregnant To Stop Her Endometriosis Symptoms
Doctors believe that hairdresser Jasmine O'Pray has the painful health condition - in which tissue similar to the lining of the womb grows in other places - and now the 28 year old says she's been told the only cure for her symptoms is to have a baby.
Jasmine began experiencing extreme pelvic pain in 2018 and it is often so bad that it impacts her daily life and she has often been rushed to hospital.
She said: "I've been told to get pregnant on several occasions because it might help change my symptoms for the better but it's not really a cure.
"I can't have sex because it's so painful, so the last thing I am thinking about is bringing a child into the world to burden with the same problems as me.
"I was so shocked when I walked away from a doctor who told me to get pregnant and I really wasn't sure what to do from then."
Jasmine adds: "It was like someone telling me that there's nothing they can do to help anymore."
Jasmine has recently had to give up her job as a hairdresser due to the agonising cramps and leg weakness the condition causes by pressing on her nerves.
She explains: "My legs are incredibly weak so it's hard to stand because they will start to shake after some time - the doctors say it could be linked to the illness because the womb lining is pressing on the nerves and irritating my thighs."
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Other symptoms she experiences include painful womb cramps she has to control with medication, as well as nausea, a loss of appetite and a bloated stomach.
Jasmine adds: "I was rushed to hospital last week because I was having a conversation with my mum and in seconds I was on the floor, heaving and screaming for help because I was in agony - my mum said I looked like I was about to give birth."
"Without more research going into the condition, I don't know what I'm going to do for the rest of my life."
She now wants to raise awareness of symptoms in a bid to help others who may have been given similar unsolicited advice.
Jasmine, who has struggled with painful periods since the age of 15, hopes the process of diagnosing and treating someone with endometriosis, which can affect one in ten women and lead to infertility, can be sped up.
"Doctors are trying to control it with medication or pregnancy and for some of us that's not an option because I don't want kids."
She thinks endometriosis is not taken seriously enough because there's a lack of awareness and research into the condition but doesn't blame the doctors.
"I don't think it's a very informed illness," she explains.
"People need to know that it's not a joke anymore and more needs to be done to help women," she adds. "That's why it's so important to me to spread awareness and speak on behalf of other women going through a similar battle."
According to CEO of Endometriosis UK, Emma Cox, "Pregnancy, like hormonal drug treatments which stop periods, may temporarily suppress the symptoms, but does not get rid of the disease itself and symptoms usually recur after the birth of the child.
"We don't know what causes endometriosis and there is no cure; myths like this highlight the real need for research into endometriosis so we can find the cause and work towards a cure as well as better treatments."
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