Amy Schumer is best known for her jokes, but her journey with endometriosis has been no laughing matter.
As SheKnows previously reported, the 41-year-old comedian, actress, and mother underwent a hysterectomy and appendectomy in 2021 to help ease her endo symptoms. She recently opened up about her “lonely battle” with the reproductive health condition in a trailer for a forthcoming episode of The Checkup with Dr. David Agus, a medical docuseries from Paramount+.
Speaking to Dr. Agus, Schumer recalled how she struggled to get people to take her endo pain seriously.
“There is an inclination to always think that a woman is being dramatic. You tell someone you get really bad cramps, and they’re like, ‘Oh, it’s being a woman,’ and you’re like, ‘no, it’s irregular.’ I’ve been in so much pain, you know, my whole life — not just the week of my period,” she explained. “It’s during ovulation. I would hopefully get a good week a month where I wasn’t in pretty significant pain, still trying to achieve, still trying to go through life. It’s been really difficult.”
Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to a person’s uterine lining grows outside their uterus, causing symptoms like intense pelvic pain, painful or irregular periods, or issues with fertility. The potentially debilitating condition affects an estimated 10 percent of people with uteruses globally, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). It is often misdiagnosed as pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or ovarian cysts — or worse, undiagnosed altogether. (Thanks, medical misogyny!)
There is no cure for endometriosis, so treatments tend to focus on pain management. Some patients are prescribed hormonal birth control to re-regulate their menstrual cycles; others opt for hormone therapy drugs that reduce estrogen in the body, which prevent menstruation and cause endometrial tissue to shrink.
For endo patients experiencing severe and chronic pain, a hysterectomy, or surgical removal of the uterus, can be a game-changer. Luckily, this was the case for Schumer, who said she felt immediate relief after her surgeries.
“I felt like a new person,” she told Dr. Agus. “It was incredible. I feel like someone lifted this veil that had been over me, and I just felt like a different person and like a new mom.”
Schumer joins a growing number of celebrities who have spoken out about battling endometriosis, including Halsey, Chrissy Teigen, and Olivia Culpo. Back in October, Corinne Foxx, daughter of Oscar-winning actor Jamie Foxx, also debuted an emotional documentary about several women living with the condition.
Take it from Schumer and her peers: Endo pain is very real and totally different than your average bout of period cramps. If you’re experiencing any symptoms of endometriosis, consider paying a visit to your primary care provider or OBGYN.
Read up on more celebrities who have spoken publicly about their reproductive health:
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