‘I’ve got no life’ - Ipswich woman's agony as she waits for operation
- Credit: Hannah Earrey
A woman from Ipswich has told of the agony of waiting for an operation for her stage four endometriosis.
Hannah Earrey, 38, underwent her second laparoscopy to remove scar tissue in January 2020. However, she knew that she would need a further operation from a specialist at Colchester Hospital, for which a date is yet to be arranged.
Hannah’s chronic pain has been steadily increasing, her operation in 2020 having bought her only “two or three” months of relief.
“Sometimes, on a really bad flare-up day, I can’t stand long enough to boil the kettle. That is how hard the pain can hit me,” she says.
“I can be fine, and I’ll think, I’ll make a start on the washing up. I’ll fill the sink – and then the pain hits me.”
Sarah Smith, associate director of women and children’s services at ESNEFT, said: “Senior clinicians have talked to Ms Earrey in person and explained that the care and treatment she needs is complex. We are doing our very best to bring all the different teams needed together as soon as possible.”
Rozie Corbett of Endometriosis UK explains: “Endometriosis is a disease where tissue similar to the lining of the womb starts to grow in other places, such as the ovaries and fallopian tubes.
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“Each month, these cells react in the same way to those in the womb, building up and then breaking down and bleeding. Unlike the cells in the womb that leave the body as a period, this blood has no way to escape. This can cause inflammation, pain and the formation of scar tissue.”
Like many sufferers, it took Hannah years to be diagnosed with endometriosis, and she remembers suffering acutely from painful, heavy periods from as young as 11 years old.
Now, she is completely “fed up” with being in constant agony.
“I completely understand how Covid has affected hospitals and backlogs,” she says. “But I’m all over the place. If I could just have a date for the surgery, that would be something.
“When they put the phone down on me, they can just carry on with their day, but I’m the one who is still having to live like this, day in, day out.
“My mental health is hugely suffering. I’m just existing. I’ve got no life.”