Women affected by Endometriosis                   

by Veronica Prampolini

Inferno - XXXV Chapter

“I would like for anyone who came upon this book in a bookstore to read at least the word endometriosis.  It does not matter if this person puts it right back and walks away.  I want this word to slowly become more and more part of the socially known diseases.  It is for this reason that I would like for this word to appear in the title, even though, romantically, I could think of more attractive titles…”. 

With these words in the pages of her book Veronica Prampolini explains her desire to share, provide and receive accurate information, as well as to help many other women, a desire which has prompted her to talk about her experience with endometriosis through a book.
It is estimated that there are 150 million women worldwide who are affected by endometriosis, 14 millions of which in Europe alone.  However, despite these figures, endometriosis remains a silent and unfamiliar disease whose causes are still unknown.  It is a disease to which very little research is devoted, which is often not even acknowledged as an actual illness and which, unfortunately, in 60% of the cases is very painful to the point of becoming almost a disability.
But most of all endometriosis is a huge obstacle for those women who want to become pregnant, even though, paradoxically, pregnancy, should they ever succeed in achieving it, is ideal to decrease the symptoms of the disease.
In her book Veronica Prampolini talks about her battle with endometriosis, the surgeries she endured, the difficulties encountered while trying to get her disease acknowledged, the impact of the disease on her marriage, as well as on her social and work life, her desire to have a baby despite her illness and her journey to motherhood through ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology).

The book has been presented in several Italian cities, also thanks to the collaborative work with Associazione Progetto Endometriosi Onlus, an association of patients which offers information on endometriosis and support to women who suffer from this disease and their families, and it has received an unexpectedly strong response.

Women affected by endometriosis and their families have attended these presentations in the hope of being able to finally share the psychological pain inflicted by this disease.

The book ‘Women Affected By Endometriosis’ also intends to denounce the law that in Italy imposes absurd limits on Assisted Reproductive Technology and that forces many couples who experience infertility to undergo treatments with a lower potential for success, which, in turn, leads them to seek care abroad.

Why this subtitle?  Veronica writes: “If Dante were alive, I would ask him to add another chapter to his Divine Comedy within the Inferno, the XXXV one."
We would find ourselves in the section of the women affected by endometriosis.
I can already picture them, all kneeling down, some of them curled up in pain, some others with their arms stretched out looking up.
Pairs of evil cherubs would hold cute little fat babies by their arms and every once in a while they would drop one.  The agony of those women down below who cannot grab it, forced to be on their knees.
A sense of powerlessness, frustration and anguish.
Why did these women end up in this section?  What did they do to deserve this?
Some have taken birth control pills for years, following their egoism, concentrating only on their personal needs.
Some others have maintained unhealthy eating habits, ingesting large amounts of dioxins and pesticides.
Some others have used panty liners for too long.  It appears that the bleaching ingredient contained in the material used to make them is harmful.”

Veronica Prampolini, who is an only child, was born in Reggio Emilia, Italy in July 1972.
She graduated from high school as a teacher and found a job as an accounting clerk.  Endowed with creativity, she has been painting rocks for ten years and during the weekends she has her own stand in the little market places of her city.  She loves photography and plays around with graphic and web design.
She still has a lot of dreams she intends to achieve with absolute tenacity and conviction.