Flattered doesn't do justice to my excitement level and sense of humility at being asked to guest blog about my pain journey for the Women's Health Foundation. They are the heroines of pelvic health and are doing amazing work. If you don't already support and love them, you will once you peruse their website.
This blog is the second in a series of four that will be published weekly on the Women's Health Foundation website. There's a teaser here, but you can read the full post on the Women's Health Foundation blog. (And, if you missed the first post in the series, you can read that here.)
Overcoming Pelvic Pain: Part II
After years of searching for a diagnosis, I finally received help from the unlikeliest of sources. In a recent podcast, I delivered the punchline: “Do you know who diagnosed me? Dr. Oz!” It’s sometimes met with confusion, other times with a “what’s he like?!” When I explain, it’s met with empathy, as the story is illustrative of how significantly my own providers had failed me over the years.
Hours after finishing my second year of law school, I sat at the kitchen table and absentmindedly Googled my pain symptoms. Although I’d run the same search countless times, this one turned up a Dr. Oz video discussing something called vulvodynia. I’d never heard the word before and was captivated.
“HE’S TALKING ABOUT WHAT’S WRONG WITH ME!!!,” I yelled and woke my husband up from a nap across the house. I was so excited. A new search for “vulvodynia” turned up Dr. Andrew Goldstein with the Center for Vulvovaginal Disorders in NYC and Washington DC – where we had a vacation planned for the following week.
I called Dr. Goldstein’s office immediately, and thanks to a last-minute cancellation, I was able to schedule an appointment at his Washington, DC clinic during our visit. His receptionist warned me on the phone that he didn’t accept insurance, but I didn’t care. Especially since she also told me that I’d leave that appointment with a diagnosis. The total bill neared $2,000, but the hope he was selling was invaluable.