Endometriosis Foundation Launched in Sri Lanka to Advocate Early Diagnosis and Lifestyle Support

Endometriosis is a debilitating condition that affects 1 in 10 women worldwide. In Sri Lanka, one woman is
determined to change how people see Endometriosis. Rashani Meegama, a sufferer of 4th stage
endometriosis and a lawyer by profession, launched the Endometriosis Support and Awareness Foundation

(ESAF) in 2021 with a mission to create awareness of endometriosis and advocate for early diagnosis and
lifestyle support.
Endometriosis is a chronic disorder where tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside in other
organs. During menstruation, abnormal tissue deposited in other organs mimics uterine lining tissue causing
chronic inflammation, bleeding, and severe pain, causing scar tissue to form. A range of symptoms include
excruciating menstrual pain, heavy periods, chronic fatigue, debilitating migraines, and irritable bowel
syndrome (IBS). Endometriosis can also lead to fertility problems and affect a woman’s mental health and
quality of life. The constant pain and discomfort can impact everyday activities, including work, social life, and
relationships. The lack of understanding and awareness of the condition can make managing it even more
ESAF’s programs and services include awareness programs, emotional support, and advocacy efforts to
destigmatize endometriosis. The foundation aims to educate society at every level, from school teachers and
nurses to family physicians and employers. By capturing the right target groups, the foundation hopes to
make a significant impact towards driving early diagnosis and providing the right moral support to
endometriosis victims.
ESAF has already made a difference in the lives of many endometriosis sufferers. The foundation has
connected with women in remote areas of the country to help them find the right doctors and treatment
options. With accurate knowledge and information, Rashani believes endometriosis sufferers can lead a
better quality of life. She says, “Endometriosis cannot be wiped away, but accurate knowledge and
information can make the biggest difference in an endo woman’s quality of life. Knowledge is power, and
ESAF will be the platform to empower you in your journey with endometriosis.”
However, ESAF faces several challenges in its mission. These include destigmatizing the taboo on
endometriosis and menstrual health, lack of knowledge and attention at primary healthcare and societal
levels, and funding to drive awareness.
The media and the general public can also be crucial in raising awareness for endometriosis and ESAF’s work.
The foundation welcomes opportunities to host awareness events in workplaces, medical clinics, and other
public places. The media can help also carry the voice in all traditional and digital media avenues throughout
the year.
With the launch of ESAF, Rashani Meegama hopes to break the silence and create awareness and support
for endometriosis sufferers in Sri Lanka. ESAF aims to empower women to take control of their journey

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