Gabrielle Union has adenomyosis.
The 45-year-old actress revealed in her book ‘We’re Going to Need More Wine’ that she had previously endured “eight or nine miscarriages”, and has now said the cause of her fertility problems was adenomyosis - a form of endometriosis which only occurs in the uterus.
Gabrielle said: “Towards the end of my fertility journey I finally got some answers. Everyone said ‘You’re a career woman, you’ve prioritised your career, you waited too long and now you’re just too old to have a kid - and that’s on you for wanting a career.’ The reality is I actually have adenomyosis.”
Adenomyosis causes the uterus to become enlarged, and sufferers may also be plagued with heavy and painful periods and chronic pelvic pain.
The only cure for the condition is to undergo a hysterectomy, in which the uterus is removed.
Speaking at the BlogHer conference in New York, the ‘Being Mary Jane’ star added: “The gag is I had it in my early 20s. Instead of diagnosing me, [doctors] were like ‘Oh you have periods that last 9 or 10 days and you’re bleeding through overnight pads … perhaps there’s something more there.’ Every doctor I saw was like let me put you on birth control.
“The pill can mask all kinds of things. It is amazing at preventing pregnancy; not so great with addressing adenomyosis.”
Previously, Gabrielle - who is married to Dwayne Wade, and helps raise his nephew Dhaveon Morris and sons Zaire and Zion from a previous marriage - admitted dealing with her infertility whilst in the public eye had been tough.
She said: “For so many women, and not just women in the spotlight, people feel very entitled to know, [they ask] ‘Do you want kids?’ A lot of people, especially people that have fertility issues, just say ‘no’ because that’s a lot easier than being honest about whatever is actually going on. People mean so well, but they have no idea the harm or frustration it can cause.”