Podcast: ‘A real injustice is being done to women with endometriosis’

Two women with the condition and gynaecologist Dr Aoife O’Neill discuss the disease with Kathy Sheridan

Podcast presenter Kathy Sheridan with Julie Ronaghan and Bébhinn Nic Liam from the Endometriosis Association of Ireland

Podcast presenter Kathy Sheridan with Julie Ronaghan and Bébhinn Nic Liam from the Endometriosis Association of Ireland

 

“When you’ve been through endometriosis journeys as we have, you do kind of go – this is so unfair. The system is loaded against women,” says Bébhinn Nic Liam, board member of the Endometriosis Association of Ireland.

Endometriosis is one of the most common gynaecological diseases affecting up to one in 10 women, yet it is poorly understood, and a diagnosis takes an average of seven years.

“There’s a real injustice being done to women, so you put your fatigue and your own pain to one side and you go – right, this can’t happen,” Nic Liam tells Kathy Sheridan on the latest episode of the Women’s Podcast.

The association is a voluntary organisation providing information and support for women with endometriosis, run mostly by women who have the condition themselves.

Also on the board is 32-year-old Julie Ronaghan, who says she knew from her first period that she was not experiencing the same symptoms as her friends each month.

Listen to the Podcast

While they complained of cramps, she soon realised that the severe pain in her lower back and down into her thighs was not usual among her peers.

Her GP put her on the oral contraceptive pill and that helped to suppress the symptoms for a few years, but it was not until her mid-20s when she and her husband were having difficulty trying for a baby – and after many misdiagnoses – that Ronaghan was finally told that she had endometriosis.

“It started a road that has been quite difficult,” she says.

“It can be a struggle to find the positives. One was that at least I had the diagnosis and there have been other things, but it has been a total rollercoaster since then. It changes you as a person.”

On the podcast, Ronaghan and Nic Liam speak about their journeys with endometriosis to date, their hopes for the future and why they are passionate about sharing accurate information about it.

Also, consultant gynaecologist Dr Aoife O’Neill, who works with women who have endometriosis, speaks about how the disease is dealt with in Ireland and the work that needs to be done to improve treatment in this country.

You can find information from the Endometriosis Association of Ireland here: www.endometriosis.ie

All our podcasts are available at www.irishtimes.com/podcasts

Subscribe to the twice weekly Women’s Podcast: on iTunes, Android or Soundcloud

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.