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Ep120 – Painful Periods Are NOT Normal with Sarah Thomson

March is Endometriosis Awareness Month. Most of us have heard of endometriosis but how many of us actually understand what it is and since such a large proportion of the population suffer with endometriosis, what is being done about it?

According to the WHO, Endometriosis is a disease where tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus, causing pain and/or infertility that affects roughly 10% (190 million) of reproductive age women and girls globally.

To be blunt, not a lot is being done about Endometriosis. There is still no easy way to diagnose it and currently in Australia, the average diagnosis time is a staggering 6.5 years*.

According to the WHO, ‘Endometriosis is a chronic disease associated with severe, life-impacting pain during periods, sexual intercourse, bowel movements and/or urination, chronic pelvic pain, abdominal bloating, nausea, fatigue, and sometimes depression, anxiety, and infertility.

The variable and broad symptoms of endometriosis mean that healthcare workers do not easily diagnose it and many individuals suffering from it have limited awareness of the condition. This can cause a lengthy delay between onset of symptoms and diagnosis.

At present, there is no known cure for endometriosis, and treatment is usually aimed at controlling symptoms.’**

Susan Thomson had painful periods as soon as she began menstruating and it only got worse over the years. Join us as she shares her story, the problems she had with the medical system, being ignored as well as getting a diagnosis, plus surgeries gone wrong, and how having endometriosis impacts her life.

It’s highly likely that you know several women who have periods so painful that they’re incapacitated every month yet it takes on average 6-10 years to be diagnosed and costs every woman with the disease approximately $30,000 a year* in lost wages and medical fees.

Endometriosis is something we all need to be more aware of rather than dismissing our pain and just ‘getting on with it’ as we do.


“The whole diagnostic journey is terrible. And once you get a gynecologist and you look forward at your treatment, nothing looks good ahead of you because all you’re going to have is constant surgeries, interspersed with horrific hormone treatment”

* Endometriosis Australia –
** World Health Organisation –

About Today’s Guest: Susan Thomson

Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) Post-Graduate Diploma Business Management, Masters of Communications Management

Lifelong Endometriosis sufferer, mother, owner and founder of Online Social Butterfly

Sarah Thomson is the owner and founder of Online Social Butterfly. She has run her own business for over 10 years and prior to that spent 15 years in corporate marketing and communications. She is a wife, mum and avid learner. She holds a range of qualifications to support her work experience.

Sarah has lived with Stage IV endometriosis for most of her adult life.

Her symptoms started as a teenager but she was not diagnosed till her late 20s.

She has lived with the silent pain and suffering that goes unnoticed with a disease that is simply not talked about enough.

Connect with Sarah: