Bindi Irwin reveals 10 year endometriosis battle: ‘fatigue, pain and nausea’

Celebrities have become more open about sharing their various health struggles, and the latest to do so is conservationist Bindi Irwin. She posted a photo from a hospital bed after a recent surgery and revealed that she’s been dealing with painful endometriosis for 10 years. Doctors removed 37 lesions. Bindi shared her story alongside International Women’s Day and Endometriosis Awareness Month.

The Australian conservationist Bindi Irwin revealed Wednesday she has undergone surgery for endometriosis after a decade-long battle with the condition that affects the uterus.

“For 10 years I’ve struggled with insurmountable fatigue, pain and nausea,” Irwin shared in posts on social media alongside an image of her in a hospital bed.

“A doctor told me it was simply something you deal with as a woman and I gave up entirely, trying to function through the pain.”

Irwin’s posts coincided with both International Women’s Day and Endometriosis Awareness Month.

Endometriosis is “a condition in which the tissue that normally lines the uterus grows outside the uterus,” according to the United States’ National Institutes of Health.

Symptoms can include pelvic pain, heavy bleeding during periods and fertility issues.

Irwin, 24, said doctors had found 37 lesions, some of which were “very deep and difficult to remove,” but she was now “on the road to recovery.”

“I’m sharing my story for anyone who reads this and is quietly dealing with pain and no answers. Let this be your validation that your pain is real and you deserve help,” she added.

She gave birth to a daughter, Grace, in March 2021.

“Please be gentle and pause before asking me (or any woman) when we’ll be having more children,” Irwin wrote in her post Wednesday. “After all that my body has gone through, I feel tremendously grateful that we have our gorgeous daughter. She feels like our family’s miracle.”


Several celebrities like Amy Schumer, Halsey, and Lena Dunham have talked about struggling with endometriosis before. And Bindi said she shared her story to help others who might be struggling as well, to show them that they’re not alone. It’s good that Bindi was able to get the surgery and hopefully it helps her find some relief. She is young, 24, and endometriosis most commonly affects women in their 30s and 40s. The number of lesions found, coupled with her age sounds like she must have had pretty bad symptoms and hopefully she recovers quickly. Hopefully Bindi sharing her story helps others who may be struggling and she’s able to rest and recover for herself and her family as well.

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29 Responses to “Bindi Irwin reveals 10 year endometriosis battle: ‘fatigue, pain and nausea’”

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  1. Moderatelywealthy says:

    I love there is more women coming forward about their painful experiences conerning their reproductive health, but in my mind it is the medical comunity that should be learning from this of stories. It is more a case of the doctors not taking women, especially of colour, seriosuly when they complain, than awareness at this point. Padma Lakshmi had it right and has been calling doctors and health insurances companies out for years.

    • Kelly says:

      Endometriosis sounds absolutely horrific and I feel so lucky that I don’t have that problem.

      Also have to say how grateful I am for my OBGYN. I’m a white woman and I happened to land with a POC female doctor after years of searching for one I liked and she is so wonderful and listens to EVERYTHING. I went to see her just this week for my yearly and I brought up how I was interested in sterilization. I’ve been very vocal in past years with her that I never want kids so she asked me why I changed my mind and wanted to look into sterilization now when I’ve always been happy with birth control. I told her honestly it was because the political situation terrifies me (my state had trigger laws for when roe got overturned) and she just nodded and went oh yeah, that totally makes sense I’ll put it in your file and we’ll get you scheduled for a consult with the surgeon our group uses. She’s always been wonderful but it was a huge weight lifted. A doctor who listens is worth their weight in gold

  2. Ariel says:

    I am enraged at the number of women who are dismissed by doctors. And thinking about how that dumbass doctor condition is exacerbated for women of color- makes me want to burn the sexist system down.

    • Izzy says:

      Idiot doctor: “Women are more tolerant of pain than men.”
      *woman goes to hospital in agony*
      Also idiot doctor: “Oh, it can’t be that bad.”

      • Lucky Charm says:

        I recently read an article about a man who made his wife pay the entire hospital bill from her own savings account after giving birth to their child, because she had the audacity to request an epidural after 24 hours of labor and he hadn’t agreed to that “luxury”.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ Ariel, though I too am grateful that Bindi spoke up and about her experience with many OB/GYN’s that poo-poo a woman’s complaints, it doesn’t negate the fact that in the 21st century women worldwide still suffer. There is an enormous amount of misogyny as well as racism surrounding women but WOC face greater hurdles to overcome with regards to basic decent care. The mortality rate for WOC is abhorrent in the US and we are held at a higher standard and we fall into the same categories of third world countries.

      It’s time that the medical/HC system come into the 21st century and realize that their lack of care is unacceptable and criminal.

      On a side note, I don’t know how you guys are able to comment so early as I usually don’t have this website fully dropped to comment in the same time frame.

      • ariel says:

        Elderly dogs woke me up at 4am to go out. I’ve been up since. Thinking about taking a nap under my desk at lunch.

  3. Nanea says:

    Here’s hoping the surgery is having positive results for Bindi.

    The Guardian had an article yesterday how they’re trying out a drug to find a potential non-surgical, non-hormonal cure.

    And they mention how reproductive health is *still* being treated as an afterthought by medical research.

    • XOXO says:

      My niece, who have been struggling for years, had a 12 hour surgery to remove endometrial cells. They were in her rectum, liver and stomach, as well as reproductive organs. This was a year ago.
      Now, she has new cells (it’s like cancer cells). She has stage 4 endometriosis. Her pain is back, I watch her suffer, and I want to scream. She now gets nerve blocking injections to help her manage the pain, and it’s still not enough. She is over-seen by a pain clinic because they have to be careful with her drug intake. It’s heartbreaking.
      People mistakenly think endometriosis only remain in the reproductive organs, so a hysterectomy and such would fix it. That’s not true at all. It’s not always the case.

  4. Shawna says:

    During a haircut this week, my stylist and I started discussing how dehumanizing childbirth was, and then it was topped by a lack of postpartum attention. I don’t want to get into details, but there’s this attitude that only the baby’s health matters. It took almost as long for us to get out our anger as it did to chop my long hair into a bob!

    • Ciotog says:

      The second they got my kid out, it felt like I didn’t exist. They sent me home a few days later with a blood pressure cuff and an appointment for two months later so I could get cleared for sex. It’s really gross.

  5. SquiddusMaximus says:

    Sure, I’m irritated with the medical community, but the problem is so much more systemic than that. I cannot fecking believe that the extent of my female health education was limited to “women get their periods then go through menopause.” I knew NOTHING about additional reproductive health, including post-pregnancy physiology, until I personally went through it. Anyone else have Sad Nipple Syndrome? That shit is REAL, and neither my OB nor my therapist had ever heard of it.

  6. North of Boston says:

    Having 37 lesions including very deep ones removed is no joke. Think about that many growths, attachments within your abdominal cavity… and all the other organs, tissues they can be entwined with. Endometriosis can cause scarring and serious damage to other organ systems, aside from causing monthly or sometimes constant pain and suffering. It’s abhorrent that doctors frequently handwave it away as “normal” or as women’s cross to bear for being women.

    If 10% + of teen boys and men had lining of one organ painfully growing and attaching and shedding all over their abdominal cavities potentially causing permanent infertility or kidney damage or intestinal damage there is no way doctors would be like 🤷‍♂️ “oh well that’s just how it is guys, get yourself some Tylenol and a hot water bottle. It can’t be that bad” or writing the guys down as having emotional issues if they don’t accept that non-answer.

    And don’t get me started on the misogynistic bigots going after access to birth control medications, which is one of the key ways endometriosis can be managed if it is diagnosed (surgery may be required to remove lesions, but medication can help somewhat with preventing them growing and spreading before and after surgery)

  7. teehee says:

    Can we just take a moment and make an analogy:

    If lung tissue were growing outside the lungs in teh rest of your body,
    People would be alarmed and treat you asap

    If liver tissue were growing outside the liver, people would be alarmed.

    If testicular tissue were growing outside a mans body, people would be alarmed


    • Tee says:

      The way this makes perfect, clearest sense and yet is STILL A F*CKING PROBLEM. It’s because women’s health is an afterthought, because the true extent of our value to them is as baby producers. It’s disgusting.

  8. Zoochy says:

    Oh my god.. That must have been awful. Endometriosis is horrible.

    Bindi looks so much like her mother.

  9. Chaine says:

    Is it really that the condition most often affects women in their 30s and 40s, or is it that with our minimal U.S. reproductive health education, it takes that long for women to understand that something is actually wrong with them and their doctors to believe them?! I mean, I don’t have endometriosis, but my periods were still incredibly painful and debilitating, back in the 70s/80s you got it ground into you that periods are not a big deal, just take some pamprin, and if you can’t or don’t want to jump around in a pastel leotard during your period like Mary Lou Retton, you are just a whiny complainer who is making the rest of the women look bad by association.

    I love being in menopause, it has really changed my life for the better. I wish there was more positivity about reaching the point in life when you aren’t in pain bleeding like a stuck pig for a week every month.

    • Erin says:

      ^^^that’s it. This awful sexist system just makes them suffer for that long before begrudgingly admitting there is actually something wrong.

  10. Jessica says:

    It took me 10 years to find a doctor who would listen to me that something wasn’t right with my periods, from my very first cycle I had debilitating pain. Many told me I was drug seeking or that pain is a normal part of it and I needed to learn how to handle it better, finally found an older male doctor who said he learned long ago to believe women, he did the surgery and I had endometriosis everywhere. Luckily it did not impact my fertility, but even after he retired and I had to find a new ob/gyn the younger doctors didn’t believe the pain I was in, even with a confirmed diagnosis. I’m so sick of women being dismissed and told to “buck up”. I’ve seen a big movement online for women to get better(any) pain management during iud insertions and cervical biopsies, but clearly we still have a long way to go when it comes to healthcare.

    It’s a shame so women suffer like this.

  11. TwinFalls says:

    It’s straight up misogyny the lack of concern for the pain women go through. I’m so glad she finally got a diagnosis and treatment but the oh excruciating pain is just part of being female from the medical community makes me so angry.

    I don’t know if this happens other places but the withholding of anesthesia for gynecological procedures in the US is truly awful.

    Of course, it’ll probably be illegal soon to do anything but just suffer as god intended.

  12. Veronica S. says:

    The medical community doesn’t want to admit the entire approach to female reproductive care is enmeshed in a historical basis of women as property and chattel. Female health is defined foremost by the ability to reproduce, and everything else is secondary to that. Our pain is an acceptable cost of male sexual desire and the production of children. Until people admit how much misogyny is simply built into the process, we’re never going to fix it.

    I’m glad women like Binidi Irwin are speaking up, but it speaks volumes about what the rest of us are up against. If a woman who had every privilege but maleness working for her was dismissed like this, imagine how much harder it must be for every woman out who’s up against minority and class prejudice.

  13. Nicole says:

    Sadly, I’ve had this same things told to be my female doctors. It’s ridiculous.

  14. Jen says:

    I’ve had so many friends in pain repeat the false information their doctors told them: ultrasound showed nothing, ergo not endometriosis. Not true. The vast majority of endometriosis doesn’t show on ultrasound. I’m comparatively lucky in that mine included endometrial ovarian cysts, which do show, but even so, my doctors acknowledged most endometriosis didn’t show on ultrasound, and there were likely other lesions. I started having severe symptoms at 16, but even with diagnosis, I still wasn’t offered surgical treatment until 26. I hope more surgeons know how to do it now, because when I was in my teens and early 20s, it seemed like not a lot did it. I’d even been offered surgery to confirm my diagnosis, but not treat it when I was 18 (ie, look, but don’t try to remove anything.) I declined that surgery, because the doctor said it wouldn’t change the recommended course of treatment: painkillers and the birth control pill.

  15. Mee says:

    “ endometriosis most commonly affects women in their 30s and 40s. ” This is not correct. I’ve had endo since I was 14. Ultrasound showed implants in the uterus. I had her symptoms too, vomiting, unbearable pain etc, I wanted surgery but they said the implants can come back so they put me on the pill which decreased pain about 30-40%. I never went off, luckily it didn’t affect my fertility. Now pain is back at 100%. I’m going to go hunt for a doctor who knows what they’re talking about. Very HARD to find.

    • Jen says:

      I agree, with regards to “endometriosis most commonly affects women in their 30s and 40s” being incorrect. Maybe a lot wait that long to be treated, but I’ve never heard of a person newly symptomatic at that age with no history. Everyone I’ve ever met who has it, or whom I read about in the news, the history of symptoms dates back to the teens.

      Mee, I really hope you are able to find a surgeon who will treat you, and that they do a good job!

    • Dazed and Confused says:

      Exactly! I had my first pain at age 12 – the summer when I had agonizing periods every two weeks. I was told things like “that will go away after you have a baby.” When I finally got a doctor to listen to me and go in for a lapro – I was 36. I had Stage 4 endo and she said it was everywhere. It came back less than three years later. I had a hysterectomy at that point – and had even more spots than 3 years earlier. There were some lesions they couldn’t remove due to their locations, but without my cycles, I have not had as much pain. It made a huge impact on my life, since for my 20s and 30s, I was out of commission 10 days a month except for powering through work. I’m glad they’ve made some changes, but they still have a ways to go.

  16. Kristin says:

    Endometriosis is a NIGHTMARE! I was diagnosed 22 years ago at the age of 21. It took 8 different doctors and multiple visits to hospitals to finally diagnose me at all. At the time, I wanted to try and keep my fertility so I had the endometrial tissue ablated out through laparoscopies. After my 5th one, I had to stop because the endometriosis was so aggressive it was growing back too fast. Fast forward to present day and I’ve had the full hysterectomy (menopause at 35 years old is a blast!), along with a Nevro stimulus implant surgically implanted into my back, and I take ALOT of prescription painkillers. It sucks constantly having to justify my use of painkillers to doctors, pharmacists, friends, etc., because to the naked eye I look healthy. So many people assume you’re exaggerating your pain for attention or to get access to narcotics, which is so insulting. I’d LOVE to never have to take another pain pill for the rest of my life. And don’t get me started on all of the doctors out there who know less than I do about endometriosis! But it’s a woman’s disease, and it’s non-fatal so the medical community generally doesn’t give a shit about it. Nevermind the fact that the pain is crippling and destroys your ability to live a productive life. I wish for more women to speak out about this so we can normalize the conversation about endometriosis and educate people on how chronic pain like this destroys lives.