Join Elaine Miller at 8.20pm, Wednesday 9th August at the New Town Theatre (Fringe venue 7) to discuss whether medical care for women’s pelvic health is misogynistic.
Tell us a bit about yourself
I have a post grad in physiotherapy for sports, but, abandoned a career tending to young fit men after having three babies in four years and ruining my undercarriage. Incontinence is a massive public health issue which is under diagnosed, under managed and often, curable. Women are simply not educated about what they can reasonably expect from their genitals during the course of their lifetime, and the fact that 1:3 women’s lives are ruled by their bladder makes me cross. Very cross.
How does your CoDI show fit in with your research?
I’m looking at whether humour is an effective health promotion tool. Taboos make it so difficult to talk about their bladder, bowel or sexual function that only 30% of women ever seek help for problems.
Why is the topic ‘dangerous’?
I think the approach to pelvic health is misogynistic. Stating that upsets people who work in the field.
Does it rightly have this label? Is the topic unjustly controversial?
Depends on who you talk to. A woman who was surgically injured by mesh might agree, a woman who was born with few risk factors for undercarriage issues might not. From a science perspective, the research is fundamentally flawed. It’s conducted on participants gained from clinic – these are the unusual people because more than 70% of women just put up with symptoms. We know very little about the fannies of the majority of women, which strikes me as odd. Further to that, the clitoris was first recorded in anatomical terms in the 1500s (by a man), and the next bit of work on this remarkably unique organ was done in 1996 (by a woman).
Why is the topic important to you?
Because the idea that a third of women are quietly disempowered because their bladder interferes with every single thing they want to do annoys me.
Describe your show in 3 words
Laugh, don’t leak.
Why should the unenlightened Fringe-goer attend your show? What will they learn?
Interesting facts about a bit of their body they’ve never really thought about. Everyone has a pelvic floor, and the evidence is that if it works well, orgasms improve. Worth doing your own wee N=1 study on that nugget.
Think that’s it, I could go on about the cost to the public purse ($43bn AU, we don’t keep stats in UK, which is odd), how obesity management is linked to leaking – if you wet yourself in the front row of zumba you don’t go back to zumba and diseases of inactivity are responsible for the same number of premature deaths as smoking is. And, if you want to talk about poo, well, I could go on about that for aaaaaaages.
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