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Endometriosis – Hope is at Hand

‘Historically, the symptoms of inexplicable chronic pelvic pain have often been attributed to imagined madness, female weakness, promiscuity or hysteria’ Wikipedia on Endometriosis.

Fortunately, the tide has turned on this outmoded way of thinking! Modern medicine recognises the painful truth about endometriosis and uterine fibroids to such an extent that Covance, the clinical research unit in Leeds, has an upcoming study which could provide hope for women suffering from these aggressive and often debilitating conditions.

Currently, there is no existing drug which combats the full spectrum of endometriosis and fibroids symptoms. I have little doubt that these symptoms will be familiar to loads of you as Hysterectomy Association members – the painful, heavy periods, pelvic pain, the bloated feeling, the fatigue, the effect on bowel and bladder (female weakness my foot!). For women who are badly affected by these conditions, going ‘under the knife’ has always been the only option. The best treatment option we have to ‘cure’ endometriosis is ablation, a surgical procedure which carries a risk of complications including infertility. Fibroids cannot be treated in the same way – in fact, uterine fibroids can even prevent women with endometriosis from having ablation! – but surgery is still the most reliable method of treating fibroids. Uterine fibroids are among the most common cause of hysterectomies.

It is very good news, then, that one of Covance’s current drug trials is for a promising new treatment for these illnesses. Having been tested on several groups of women already, this particular compound has been found provide powerful defence from the heavy bleeding and pain associated with endometriosis and fibroids. But before this new drug can be marketed, Covance will perform a ‘drug/drug interaction’- a study to find out whether taking this alongside another drug will enhance or inhibit how effectively it works.

For this study group, Covance is looking for healthy women aged 45 – 70 who have been through the menopause (whether this has happened naturally or you’ve had your ovaries removed).

To take part, you do NOT need to have a history of fibroids or endometriosis yourself – but you can take part if you’ve had either of these conditions and they have fully resolved.

While you are in the clinic, you will receive from £100 per day for your time, and Covance will also help with travel expenses for you to attend a medical screening and any follow-up appointments.

If you would like to take part yourself, click here or give Covance a call on 0113 3945 200. Because Covance requires a very specific type of volunteer for this study, they are also offering a £200 referral fee to anyone who recommends a friend or family member – click here to go to the recommend a friend form. The £200 will be paid to you when your friend attends their medical screening appointment.

Thousands of women battle with fibroids and endometriosis throughout their adult lives. Imagine what we could achieve if we could stop using all our strength and courage fighting these invisible illnesses! By volunteering, you could be instrumental in helping to bring about this change. Why not give it a go?

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Linda Parkinson-Hardman

Transformational coach and founder of the Hysterectomy Association. Professionally I'm an information scientist who specialises in the adoption and engagement of digital technologies. I am a writer and author of nine books to date, and I've edited a further seven; phew what a lot for a Thursday afternoon :-)

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