Stevenage’s Lister Hospital achieves national accreditation for endometriosis service

The Endometriosis Hertfordshire team is celebrating national accreditation, with clinical endometrio

The Endometriosis Hertfordshire team is celebrating national accreditation, with clinical endometriosis lead Chou Phay Lim pictured here in the centre. Picture: Courtesy of the ENHT. - Credit: Archant

A service at Stevenage’s Lister Hospital dedicated to women with a debilitating condition which can irreversibly damage organs and cause infertility has received national accreditation.

Endometriosis Hertfordshire - part of the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust - has been recognised by the British Society for Gynaecological Endoscopy as an accredited endometriosis centre - the only one in the county.

Endometriosis is a painful condition where tissue similar to the womb lining grows in other places, such as the ovaries.

Debilitating symptoms can include pain, feeling sick, constipation or diarrhoea.

In its extreme, endometriosis can lead to sufferers requiring kidney or bowel removal, and IVF if trying to get pregnant.

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Patients needing complex surgery can now have the procedure at Lister, instead of travelling into London.

The Endometriosis Hertfordshire team - including specialists in colorectal surgery, urology and radiology - annually performs more than 200 cases of laparoscopic surgeries.

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As part of the accreditation process, 39 cases of complex surgery were registered on the national database during 2019.

Chou Phay Lim, consultant advanced gynaecological endoscopic surgeon and clinical endometriosis lead at the trust, said: "Being accredited is an important milestone in the treatment of endometriosis patients in Hertfordshire, as we are now nationally recognised to be able to offer the best treatment for women with all forms of endometriosis.

"Just because women have the condition, it does not mean they have to suffer with it."

Stevenage's Sue Thomson said treatment she received at Lister changed her life. "You are often expected to live with the symptoms, which can be completely debilitating," she said. "When I began treatment at Lister staff took the time to really listen and understand what I was going through. I have received first class service and my life has improved dramatically since my operation."

A spokesman for Endometriosis UK Hertfordshire Support Group said: "We welcome this news with immense relief. Women can now receive expert treatment - including for severe and complex endometriosis - without the added difficulty of travelling."

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