Recent writing: living with chronic pain, and the link between lichen sclerosus and vulval cancer

In February I started working with a new commercial client on content around mental health and community treatment teams. I also wrote pieces for Broadly and Patient, the former looking at a little known gynaecological condition called lichen sclerosus, and the latter looking at what it’s like to live with chronic pain.

Doctors Thought I Had Chronic Yeast Infections—But I Really Had Cancer – for Broadly:

For most of her life, Clare Baumhauer assumed her sore, itchy vulva was normal. “From when I was primary school [elementary] age, I was telling my mum that I was sore and itchy down there, and that it was burning when I went to the toilet,” the 45-year-old hospitality supervisor recalls.

“I remember her taking me to see my GP two or three times. He never looked at me, but I was given different creams and none of them helped. Even at that age, I quickly became reluctant to keep going back.”

After nearly 40 years of being misdiagnosed with everything from yeast infections to cystitisearly menopause, eczema, and even herpes, in 2016 Baumhauer received a devastating diagnosis of vulva cancer—caused, in her case, by a little-known skin condition called lichen sclerosus (LS).

Continue reading at Broadly…

This is what it feels like to live with chronic pain – for Patient:

Nearly half of the UK population – around 28 million adults – lives with some form of chronic pain. A research analysis published by the BMJ in 2016 found that 43% of Brits are affected and, researchers say, that number is only likely to keep rising with our ageing population.

With chronic pain described as ‘a major cause of disability and distress’, what exactly is causing so many people to live in constant pain, and how does it impact on their everyday lives?

Continue reading at Patient…


Please note that I am NOT a psychologist or healthcare professional. Check out my resources page for details of organisations who might be able to help.

If you are struggling with mental health problems, contact Mind on 0300 123 3393 or Rethink Mental Health on 0300 5000 927. In a crisis, call the free, 24/7 Samaritans helpline on 116 123.

However, if you would like to get in touch about your own experiences, or a story that you’re keen to tell, please feel free to drop me an email.

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