Nearly 80 attendees, many of whom were nurses from around the New York/New Jersey Metro region, took part in a day-long event Sept. 29 at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan with TV host Padma Lakshmi.
The event, “Considering Endometriosis: Tools for Nurses to Recognize Symptoms, Behavioral Patterns and Emotion Repercussions of the Disease in Young Women and Girls,” was hosted by Lenox Hill and Lakshmi, co-founder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America and host of Bravos popular “Top Chef” TV shows.
The goal of the event was to educate healthcare professionals who work with young women about endometriosis and give them the tools to recognize symptoms, behavioral patterns and emotional repercussions of the painful, debilitating disease that affects 176 million women worldwide, including Lakshmi.
Nurses in attendance learned about an endometriosis toolkit and ways to use it, took part in a Q&A session and shared personal experiences. Among the events speakers was Lakshmi, who discussed “My Personal Journey.” Other presentations included a welcome message from Sharon Sperling-Silber, NP, along with the session “What is Endometriosis? Why Early Detection & Intervention are Important” by EFA co-founder Tamer Seckin, MD. Tracy Shaltis, RN, discussed “Appointment Preparation: The Next Step.”
In her opening remarks, Lakshmi urged healthcare professionals to speak to two women about endometriosis in an effort to raise awareness. Lakshmi also interviewed a young endometriosis patient named MacKenzie, a high school senior who underwent a laparoscopic excision surgery one year ago. The story emphasized the need for earlier diagnosis, and the need to educate school nurses about endometriosis because MacKenzies school nurse did not recognize the symptoms to be a possible endometriosis case.
EFA also launched a poster campaign. The posters were created for school nurses offices, girls locker rooms and physicians offices to spread the word that the pain they feel each month might be more than PMS symptoms and to get checked.
Earlier this year, Lucille Roberts Gyms, a group of women-only health clubs, put up the educational posters in their 45 gyms in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
FOR INFORMATION visit EndoFound.org.