A noted US researcher has floated the Endometriosis Foundation of America (EFA) to promote awareness and treatment of endometriosis that often goes undiagnosed.
Endometriosis occurswhen the tissue that lines the uterus grows in other places and can cause problems such as pain and infertility.
The woman behind the venture, Dr. Linda Griffithn, heads the department of Biological Engineering in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and she herself suffers from the apparently intractable problem.
She has had nine surgeries, including a hysterectomy to treat the disease. And she was inspired to start the center in part by the experience of her niece, who showed similar symptoms, including debilitating pain — and who, like Griffith, wasn't properly diagnosed.
The disease affects at least 5.5 million women in North America, but it is often goes undiscussed and undiagnosed. "We need gynepathology to be something my dean can talk about with a straight face the same way he would talk about breast cancer," Griffith told the Boston Globe.
The foundation seeks to provide hope to women suffering from the debilitating effects of endometriosis and associated diseases. In contrast to the enigmatic picture often painted of endometriosis as an incurable condition, the EFA firmly believes that
every stage of the disease is treatable and with the correct surgical techniques even curable. However, early diagnosis and timely intervention are crucial.
The EFA's mission further addresses societal prejudices and misinformation about endometriosis in the medical community. Through combining research and education, as well as emotional and financial support, we are here to help the women who suffer from this disease while actively working to find a permanent cure, says the website.
And a co-founder of the foundation is the high profile model and auhor of Indian origin, Padma Lakshmi. She has confirmed that she is carrying her first child after years of struggling with Endometriosis.
As a result of her condition, this pregnancy has been referred to by her physician as nothing short of a medical miracle.