Lena Dunham
Julie Mazziotta
April 04, 2017 10:16 AM

Lena Dunham has a major cause for celebration — after years of suffering from endometriosis, she is now free of the uterine disorder.

The Girls writer and star underwent her fifth surgery in the last year to move her ovaries away from her rectal wall on Saturday, and end her chronic pain.

Dunham, 30, says that she and her doctors had tried every non-surgical option possible, from yoga to a holistic diet (which Dunham says is the cause of the “thin shaming” she was experiencing), but the pain was too overwhelming, and would not go away.

“My surgery went off without a hitch,” she writes, in the latest edition of Lenny Letter. “When I emerged, cotton-mouthed, Randy told me something I hadn’t expected to hear, maybe ever: there was no endometriosis left. Between my surgeries and hormonal intervention, I was disease-free. That doesn’t mean it can never return, but for now, once my sutures have been removed and my bruises have changed from blue to yellow to green to gone, I will be healthy.”

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While Dunham is now physically healthy, she recognized after her surgery that the pain she lived with for the last few years became a part of her self-image.

“All that will remain is my long-term relationship with pain, and it’s time to get real about that,” she says. “My pain — physical — distracted from my deeper pain — emotional, spiritual — and became the ultimate excuse. I had two modes: working and hurting. I was convinced there was nobility in it. There was certainly routine.”

“Now, because of the unbelievable privilege of having thoughtful doctors, my body has been granted a reprieve. And I’m embarrassed to say that the excitement is mixed with loss. Pain and illness defined a time in my life.”

Instead of wallowing in her pain, Dunham says she now needs to use her health and strength to help those who are still fighting.

“So many people who suffer will never have the resources I’ve had,” she says. “My job is to educate people, to try to change the pathetic lack of resources for endometriosis, but it’s also to seize this gift. I’ll be more useful that way.”

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