Bindi Irwin has been increasingly open about her battle with endometriosis. After revealing that she suffered from the illness early in 2023, the Australian celebrity – who is daughter to late zookeeper and conservationist Steve Irwin – has campaigned for better awareness of endometriosis and other conditions that impact women, which have historically been minimised and underdiagnosed by medical professionals.
Irwin has not held back on the graphic details of how endometriosis impacted her life, in an effort to show others how important it is that we focus our energy on getting women prompt diagnosis when symptoms arise.
In September 2023, she announced an update, that she had undergone surgery to remove her endometriosis and that it game her “a second chance at life.” Here’s what you need to know about her journey.
Does Bindi Irwin Suffer From Endometriosis?
Bindi went revealed her diagnosis in March 2023, sharing an image with her 5 million Instagram followers that showed her recovering in hospital from a surgery, which uncovered “37 lesions, some very deep & difficult to remove, & a chocolate cyst.”
“Chocolate cyst” is a term commonly used to describe cystic lesions that form in the ovaries as a result of endometriosis. They are filled with dark brown endometrial fluid, and indicate a more severe stage of the disease.
Irwin also revealed that she has struggled with “with insurmountable fatigue, pain & nausea” as a result of the disease, which, according to Endometriosis Australia, can only be diagnosed through surgical intervention.
Because the disease is so difficult to diagnose, many women struggle to feel validated in their symptoms, something that Irwin expressed in her post.
“A doctor told me it was simply something you deal with as a woman & I gave up entirely, trying to function through the pain,” she said.
“Validation for years of pain is indescribable…Thank you to the doctors & nurses who believed my pain,” she added.
Bindi Irwin Advocates For Women To Fight For Their Health
In May 2023, Bindi Irwin shared raw new details of her ten year battle with endometriosis.
In a video posted to Instagram, the young wildlife conservationist said she started experiencing “extreme fatigue and nausea and pain” when she was 14.
“I had pain every single day of my life. Suddenly, no matter where we went, where we were going, I would be falling asleep. I felt like I constantly had the flu.”
She also shared the intense frustration that came with a lack of diagnosis, after countless tests failed to show the disease.
“We tried and tried and tried for years and years and years, and finally, a doctor told me it was just part of being a woman. And that’s when I gave up. I stopped looking for answers.”
Bindi also explained that, in 2021, after giving birth to her daughter, Grace Warrior, the pain reached an excruciating level.
“I had a pain in my pelvis, pains in my belly, every day. But every now and then, the pain would get so much that it would literally just knock me over.”
She became emotional remembering the struggle of trying to care for her young daughter amidst the insidious disease.
“I can remember being with Grace and lying on the floor in agony. I had a stabbing pain in my side. I couldn’t get up, or I would throw up. And I was scared I would pass out,” she said.
“I was so scared because I was worried if I was alone with Grace, something would happen to me and she would be on her own.”
Over the years, Irwin says she has continued to share the news of her diagnosis in a bid to help alleviate the stigma that surrounds endometriosis, and empower other women struggling with symptoms to search for answers.
“Let this be your validation that your pain is real & you deserve help,” she wrote. Irwin has also previously asked her followers to be mindful when questioning a woman’s fertility, and whether she will have more children.
“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. I’m aware of millions of women struggling with a similar story,” she wrote.
Bindi Irwin Opens Up About Her Surgery For Endometriosis
Bindi Irwin has undergone lifechanging surgery to remove her endometriosis that she says has given her “a second change” at a happy life.
“My life now looks completely different than it did before I had my surgery,” she told Fox News Digital. “Over the 10 years that I was really battling with endo[metriosis] without knowing it, I would get progressively worse every week and in the end, before my surgery, I was barely able to get out of bed.”
After undergoing the invasive surgery, she says she can now go on daily walks around the zoo with her family, something that was previously very difficult with the pain she was under.
“I’m able to go to our management meetings and check up on our animals and do the filming work that I love and play with my daughter.
“And it is just so wonderful. I feel like I see the world in a new way now. I’m able to actually do things again,” she added. “It does feel like a second chance at life.”
Irwin added that the chronic pain she had been in had impacted her ability to see the lighter side of life. When her husband Chandler made her laugh she turned to him and said, ‘Have you always been this funny?’.
“And he said, ‘I think you’ve just been in too much pain.’ I said, ‘I feel like I’ve just gotten a new husband because you’re really fun and funny.’”
“I was trying so hard to mask my pain and be there and be present for my family,” she continued. “And it takes such a toll when you’re trying not to just collapse and hide it.”