Lena Dunham Reveals in Harrowing Essay She Asked to Have Her 'Defective' Uterus Removed

PEOPLE.com | 2/14/2018 | Staff
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Throughout her years of endometriosis pain, Lena Dunham suspected that her uterus was “defective,” despite her doctors’ assurances. And as her pain became “unbearable,” it was the actress who requested the hysterectomy surgery to remove her uterus and cervix, she reveals in a harrowing essay in the March issue of Vogue.

Dunham, 31, had thought in April that she was finally endometriosis-free, but she was hospitalized in May for further complications. She then spent August to November in “delirious” pain that, she said, her doctors couldn’t explain.

Ultrasound - Cysts - Fluid - Baby - Dunham

“The ultrasound shows no cysts, no free fluid, and certainly no baby,” Dunham said. “But that doesn’t help the fact that it hurts so bad that the human voices around me have become a sort of nonsense Teletubbies singsong.”

Dunham requested a hysterectomy, but doctors suggested she first spend a few days carefully thinking about her choice since it would mean she could not carry a child, which had been a lifelong dream. The Girls writer and star stayed in a hospital for 12 days “on what is essentially medical-grade heroin to handle the pain,” she wrote. In a final attempt to save her uterus, she had one last surgery: a dilation and curettage, in which excess tissue is cut away from the uterus.

Dunham - Recovery - Bay - IV - Drip

“But it doesn’t go as expected,” Dunham wrote, “and I end up in a recovery bay on an IV drip of Pitocin, the drug used to induce labor. They need my uterus to contract —...
(Excerpt) Read more at: PEOPLE.com
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