Emily Seebohm, Olympic swimmer speaks out about endometriosis affecting her performance

Bobo Li

By Bobo Li

Registered Physiotherapist (APA Member)

Posted on: 05/03/2019

emily seebohmEmily Seebohm continues to encourage people to talk about endometriosis as she opens up about how endometriosis has affected her life in particular the 2016 Rio Olympics. Emily found out that she might have endometriosis the year she was training for the Olympics. She had to delay her surgery and suffer through her symptoms until after the Olympics.

Endometriosis affects 1 in 10 women. It is when there are cells that should be in your uterus are outside your uterus, commonly growing on your ovaries, fallopian tubes, bowel and other structures in your pelvis. It can affect fertility. Symptoms can be very individual. Emily had massive cramps, low back pain, headaches and constant fatigue. She had to go to bed between her sessions so she could have enough energy to perform at night. Her sugar cravings were so strong she could not resist choosing unhealthy foods and put on weight. endometriosis

She is now an Ambassador for Endometriosis Australia and says “I’d love to see programs go into schools and actually educate girls on things properly because when I was going to school it’s almost like you just don’t talk about it.”

She had laparoscopic surgery in December 2016 to be able to confirm and take out the endometriosis. She put up on Instagram a picture of her recovering in hospital to encourage girls who may also have endometriosis. The best way to treat endometriosis is keyhole surgery. It can be hard to identify and locate. It is important to find the surgeon who is very experienced, in order to find and take all of it out the first time to prevent further surgeries in the future. Endometriosis is commonly coupled with pelvic pain that can be treated by a women’s health physiotherapist. Emily has made a good recovery and feels that she has restored her energy levels back to normal. She says talking about it with other women has helped her better cope and manage her endometriosis. More information can be found on :

www.endometriosisaustralia.org

www.jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/endometriosis

www.pelvicpain.org.au/for-women/endometriosis/

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