It took seven years for my previous doctors to diagnose my endometriosis. Seven years. During that time, I graduated college, bought a house, got married and adopted my third puppy. And through all that time, I had crippling pelvic pain, heavy periods, and called in sick to work more than once because painkillers weren’t enough.
My disease is real, even if people are not able to see it.
Endometriosis is a disease that is surrounded by misconceptions and myths. Thankfully, some of them are being debunked by new research findings and a conversation about the disease has started thanks to spokeswomen such as Whoopi Goldberg, Julianne Hough, and Lena Dunham.
However, there are still thousands of people who don’t know what endometriosis is. So, here it is:
Endometriosis, according to Mayo Clinic, is a painful disorder in which the tissue of the endometrium that normally builds up inside the uterus grows outside the uterus. The tissue can grow in organs like the ovaries or bowels which may lead to severe inflammation and pain.
My endometriosis was not going away, so I decided to join a clinical research trial. Here are some of the reasons I decided it was time to help further the medical knowledge for endometriosis and make a difference:
1. We need more research: The goal of clinical trials is to learn more about the disease and improve healthcare options for current and future generations. Clinical trials depend on volunteers like you and me to conduct the research studies. If there are no volunteers, no advancement could be made.
2. No more waiting for a doctor’s appointment: Getting a doctor’s appointment can take weeks or even months and many of us can’t wait that long to get a diagnosis or start treatment. When I joined a clinical trial, I was able to see a board-certified physician and received one-on-one medical care without having to wait.
3. Access to approved medications and testing supplies: Oftentimes, trials compare an investigational medication/treatment to one that is already on the market (and FDA approved). As a volunteer, you may receive the standard care of treatment at no cost to you during your participation in a clinical trial.
4. Access to medications and procedures not yet available to the public: As a volunteer, you may also help to test the investigational medication/treatment which may be beneficial for you.
5. Access to new information about my condition: Volunteers will learn about their conditions, its symptoms, and possible management options. According to MyLocalStudy.com, in some instances, participants may receive a diagnosis of their symptoms when evaluated by a physician.
Clinical trials may help you be a healthier you!
6. No insurance is required: Medical care is expensive, even if you have a good health insurance coverage. Clinical trials do NOT require you to have insurance to participate and may even compensate you for your time and travel.
7. It’s voluntary: Joining a clinical research study is entirely up to you and you can stop your participation at any time.
8. Help others: Participating in a trial will help further the advancement of medical research. My participation will bring doctors one step closer to finding a new treatment or even a cure for endometriosis. Current and future generations will benefit from that knowledge and I take pride in saying that I was a part of it!
Volunteering for a clinical research is a noble and heroic act! Bring hope to current and future generations, apply for a clinical research study HERE!