Power FM’s LJ: My journey with endometriosis


Power FM Ballarat Breakfast announcer Lara Jean ‘LJ’ Marshall has opened up about the toll endometriosis has taken on her life.

March is Endometriosis Awareness Month, and LJ made the decision to share her own harrowing personal journey with listeners.

Last week on air, LJ and co-host Jack Van Der Heyden spoke to LJ’s dad – Dr Brett Marshall – who happens to be a gynaecologist specialising in endometriosis and keyhole surgery.

He explained the common symptoms to look out for, and why many women don’t seek help.

LJ tells Radio Today her own battle with the painful condition began back in 2009.

“It started with intense nausea and severe bloating, which affected my everyday life and work.”

“It looked like I was pregnant. I couldn’t fit into my jeans, so I went for baggy dresses.”

LJ initially thought it had something to do with her diet.

She started cutting out different foods, but says frustratingly, nothing worked.

“Then I started to have stabbing pain in my central pelvis which was excruciating. Being a specialist in the field, my dad noticed this quickly as a symptom of having endometriosis.”

“I saw a specialist and was told it was likely I had endometriosis. I did many scans and tests – which were draining, but necessary.”

LJ says the full extent of the disease didn’t become apparent until she underwent surgery.

“I had one laparoscopy. The surgery was a success and I felt much better over time, but within two years the endometriosis came back, and I had to have another laparoscopy.”

“I had another set of scars on my body and felt embarrassed by them, especially when swimming.”

But LJ says over time, she’s come to love her scars.

“They are a part of me. My ‘battle scars.’”

Since LJ’s second round of surgery, the endometriosis hasn’t returned.

“I caught it early, but members of my family haven’t been as lucky in that department.”

“And it does have a strong genetic basis, so it’s not only important for women who have a family history, but also important that all women seek help early from trusted specialists.”

“I also had very heavy periods and was constantly sick regularly because of the pain. I remember people saying I looked green. But since the surgery and having a Mirena IUD, I feel in control of my body and my life.”

LJ says she asked her dad to come on air because it’s important other women know and understand what is happening in their bodies, and what treatments are available.

“It can be uncomfortable and invasive to see a specialist, but it’s better to get everything sorted. The earlier, the better.”

“Don’t be scared seek help and get your life back.”

B105 Assistant Content Director & Afternoon Announcer Ellie Angel-Mobbs is an ambassador and podcast host for Endometriosis Australia. Find out more info and FAQs here.

More info from Dr Brett Marshall’s site and FAQs are available here.

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