While she graced dozens of magazine covers, Padma Lakshmi harbored a painful secret: She suffered from endometriosis, a female reproductive disorder in which the endometrium, which normally lines a woman’s uterus, grows in other places as well, typically on the fallopian tubes, ovaries or the tissue lining a woman’s pelvis.
Left untreated, endometriosis can cause pelvic pain, excessive bleeding, fertility problems, back pain, and painful monthly periods.
Many women with endometriosis struggle with infertility. However, Lakshmi defied the odds when she announced her pregnancy last year. She gave birth to daughter Krishna in February.
Prior to her diagnosis, Lakshmi’s menstrual cramps left her bedridden for days. While friends tamed period pain with heating pads and over-the-counter medicines, the “Top Chef” host relied on the prescription narcotic Vicodin for relief.