Georgie Wileman: Endometriosis is a disease where tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows throughout the body, usually in the pelvis or abdominal cavity. It bleeds and spreads, fusing together or completely damaging the reproductive system, parts of the bowel, bladder or more. It’s treated with hormones, pain killers and surgeries – all too often by doctors without adequate training, using treatments and surgical techniques that cause further damage and pain.
When I became extremely ill at age 13, my first referral was to a psychotherapist with a misdiagnosis of depression. On average women wait 10 years for a correct diagnosis, and it took me 12 years of severe pain, collapsing, bleeding, wheelchairs, ambulances and accusations before receiving mine.
With this project I want to make Endometriosis visible. This is what it looks like. One in ten women of reproductive age have this, and we need to be seen.
2014 – 2017, the first photograph in the ENDOMETRIOSIS series, was recently on show at the National Portrait Gallery in London as part of the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize exhibition (16.10.17 – 08.02.18).
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