Topics and Presenters
Laparoscopy & Beyond
Dr Susan Evans MBBS, FRANZCOG, GAICD, FFPMANZCA
Susan is a Gynaecologist, Laparoscopic Surgeon and Specialist Pain Medicine Physician in Adelaide, with particular interest in the management of pelvic pain. She is the author of the book ‘Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain’ and co-author of the policy document ‘The $6Billion Woman and the $600Million Girl: The Pelvic Pain Report’. She has a long held interest in improving the Quality of Life for women and girls with pelvic pain.
Dr Susan Evans has contributed widely to education on pelvic pain in Australia and overseas through contributions to medical textbooks, international pain guidelines, online learning modules, articles in everything from medical journals to Cosmopoliton, and media interviews across ABC and Commercial TV and Radio.
She is a director of the Pelvic Pain Foundation of Australia (www.pelvicpain.org.au), a not-for-profit health promotion charity that supports education and research in pelvic pain.
Self Management – How?
Deborah Bush MNZM QSM Dip Tchg, LSB
Co-Founder, CEO Endometriosis New Zealand
Director EPP Coaching and Consulting
World Endometriosis Society Board Member
Deborah began her career as a secondary school teacher and has a background in speech and drama and dance, qualifying as a teacher in both. She co-founded Endometriosis New Zealand in 1985 having experienced the debilitating impact endometriosis can have. Since that time, she has had a global influence on the health promotion and prevention of endometriosis. Deborah’s dedication to improving the health and well-being of women and girls with endometriosis through specialised services and programmes and working with all stakeholders, is recognised internationally.
Deborah developed the world’s first Menstrual Health and Endometriosis (‘me’) school education programme in 1997. A unique well-health model, ‘me’ is positively and profoundly influencing improved health outcomes in this demographic, through early recognition of symptoms and timely intervention. She has developed ground-breaking programmes for workplaces, hospitals and CME.
In 2001, she developed EPP COACHING AND CONSULTING™ (Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain), her private practice which integrates into multi-disciplinary treatment centres in Auckland and Christchurch. Her consultations focus on well-health through empowerment, education, evidence based treatment including self-management and self-belief. Her love of dance, fun, and entrepreneurship saw her develop DANCE FOR ME in 2014, an initiative based on the principle that exercise is the best non-drug treatment for pain.
Deborah has contributed to the medical literature through publications and books. She is the only non-medic on the World Endometriosis Board. She was instrumental in establishing a Task Force with the NZ Government in 2015 which is making progress to address endometriosis as a major public health issue and improve health outcomes for girls and women with the condition.
She frequently presents as key note speaker at international academic conferences and as MC at many functions. She was described by the judges at the 2012 Woman of the Year Awards as:
“a pioneer, a visionary, a highly effective lay person in a specialised medical world bringing relief from disability and pain to thousands.”
Deborah has been the recipient of many awards and Honours including the Commonwealth Award for Excellence in Women’s Health, Queen’s Service Medal 2003, Paul Newman Award 2007, Zonta International Woman of the Biennium 2011-2013, Woman of the Year 2012, Woman of Achievement 2016 and The New Zealand Order of Merit in 2017.
Lesley & Syl Freedman
Lesley Freedman has an MA in Writing for Media and a Post Grad Diploma in Social Health. She is passionate about social justice, equal opportunity and equal pay for women and improving the lives of women and girls with Endo.
Lesley has worked in the media since leaving school in NZ. She was a Director at ABC TV in Sydney for 12 years and President of the ABC Child Care Centre for 5 years. She was a single parent for 7 years after the birth of her first child. Lesley has been a voluntary Advocate for an intellectually and mentally disabled person for the last 16 years.
She is Co-Director with her partner, Rod of Change Focus Media, an independent production company that produces health and education video resources and documentaries
Syl Freedman was diagnosed with Stage 4 Endometriosis in 2012. Since then she has had two laparoscopic surgeries. At age 23, she chose ovarian stimulation and egg freezing as a possible insurance against potential infertility. Syl blogs about her experiences at sylfreedman.com
Until her illness prevented her, she worked as a summer camp Counsellor/Soccer Coach in the USA and in hospitality while at uni, funding her backpacking through Europe, South East Asia and Central America.
Syl has a Bachelor of Communications in Social Inquiry from UTS with a sub-major in Media Studies and a Master of Health Communication from Sydney University. She’s currently completing a Master of Philosophy (Medicine) with research into The Patient Experience of Endometriosis.
Sex, Intimacy & Endo
Nina Booysen BA, Grad Dip Couns, MHSSH
Nina is a relationship therapist and sexologist. She has worked in community service organisations such as the Domestic Violence Crisis Service in the ACT and Somerville community Services in Darwin as a Family Support worker and counsellor. The majority of Nina’s experience has come from working in private practice gaining experience in the United States, Canberra and Darwin. Currently Nina sub contracts to a Psychological services organisation EASA and maintains her private practice offering workshops and training.
Nina attained her BA Psychology in South Africa and her Graduate Diploma in Community Counselling in Canberra. Gaining her Masters in HIV, STIs and Sexual Health counselling from Sydney University in 2012 gave her the specialty that she has wanted to focus on and work in. This also enabled her to work with a Clinical Psychologist in Ohio USA and attend professional development opportunities at the Kinsey Institute in Indiana.
Nina is currently completing her Masters of Social Work through SCU. Nina has a passion for helping couples who are battling illness, sexual dysfunction or struggling to remain in their relationships. She works with and gains referrals from clients, GP’s and the Alan Walker Oncology Centre supporting clients undergoing cancer and other treatments. Nina has contributed to print publications, online media and radio on various topics including relevant local issues such as the impact of FIFO work on relationships.
Nina has trained in gender diversity and supports clients from the LGBTQI community. She follows the Gottman Couples Therapy framework and utilises solution focussed, strengths based and cognitive behavioural techniques in her therapeutic approach. Nina is also trained in EMDR as a technique to assist clients who have suffered trauma.
Guts and Endo
Dr Rebecca Burgell MBBS (Hons)
FRACP (Gastroenterology) PhD
Rebecca is a consultant gastroenterologist with an interest in pelvic floor dysfunction and functional gastrointestinal disorders. She undertook her PhD at the University of London examining the physiology of the lower bowel in patients with severe functional constipation working under Dr Mark Scott, Prof Norman Williams, Prof Qasim Aziz and Prof Charles Knowles at the National centre for bowel research and surgical innovation based at Bart’s Health in London. She is expert in performing anorectal physiology investigations and endoanal ultrasound, with 4 years’ experience working within Bart’s busy GI physiology unit. Dr Burgell currently works fulltime at Alfred Health and Monash University where she is head of the Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders Service.
Dr Anne Clark MBChB, MPS, FRANZCOG, FRCOG, CREI
Anne is an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist who sub specialised in fertility and reproductive medicine 30 years ago. She was the first woman in Australia to obtain sub specialist qualification in this area.
She is currently Medical Director of Fertility First, an independent IVF and Fertility Clinic she founded 20 years ago. It was only the second clinic in Australia to be founded by a woman. Fertility First focuses on lifestyle modifications and peri conception health to maximise a couple’s fertility and healthy ongoing pregnancies as the first step in the management of any fertility issues. Fertility First is also one of the largest donor sperm and donor egg practices in Australia. It focuses much of its research on ways to maximise sperm and sperm function, recognising the man is half the baby and therefore needs half the attention.
She is on the Board of ACCESS, the national consumer support group, the Board of the Fertility Society of Australia (FSA), the Executive of the IVF Director’s Group and chaired the first Fertility Society of Australia Preservation of Fertility Group. She was recently appointed a member of the Embryo Research Licensing Committee of the National Health and Medical Research Council by the Federal Minister of Health.
She is regularly invited to speak or write articles, particularly on issues related to fertility preservation and peri conception health, male factor fertility, PCOS, endometriosis and the medical management of IVF cycles, particularly for women who have fewer eggs growing.
Sensitisation, Pain & Brain
Dr Meredith Craigie MBBS BMedSc MM (PM) FANZCA FFPMANZCA
Meredith is a specialist pain medicine physician working in the Pain Management Unit at the Royal Adelaide Hospital. She is the vice-Dean of the Faculty of Pain Medicine of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists and a Clinical Senior Lecturer at Flinders University.
Meredith did postgraduate training in anaesthesia and intensive care in Adelaide, sub-specialising in paediatric anaesthesia in the United Kingdom. Meredith’s interest in pain medicine developed from looking after children with challenging pain problems when she was a paediatric anaesthetist at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital in Adelaide. She completed a Masters of Pain Medicine from Sydney University after a move to Flinders Medical Centre in 2004, ultimately taking up her current position in 2011.
Meredith also has a strong interest in medical education. She has fulfilled numerous teaching roles as a clinician and for the Faculty of Pain Medicine and ANZCA. She remains passionate about pain in childhood, the transition from acute to chronic pain and persistent pelvic pain. She is a foundation board member of the Pelvic Pain Foundation of Australia and participates in overseas aid programs with Flinders Overseas Health Group.
Hormonal Contraception & Endo: Busting the Myths
Dr Terri Foran MB BS (Syd), MClin Ed (UNSW), FAChSHM
Terri is a Sexual Health Physician and has a special interest in contraception, menopause issues and the management of sexually transmitted infections. She was previously the Medical Director of Family Planning NSW and is now in clinical practice in Darlinghurst. She is also presently engaged in both clinical and research work at the Royal Hospital for Women in Sydney.
Dr Foran holds the position of Lecturer at the University of New South Wales in the School of Women’s and Children’s Health. She coordinates Phase 2 of their undergraduate Women’s Health program as well as supervising a number of modules in the Masters of Reproductive Medicine and Masters of Women’s Health Medicine Programs offered by UNSW.
Dr Foran is currently the monthly Women’s Health columnist for Australian Doctor Magazine and has contributed to several Australian textbooks on Sexual and Reproductive Health.
Endo, Ultrasound & MRI – Why?
Dr Kate Stone MBBS, FRANZCOG,DDU, COGU
Kate is an obstetrician gynaecologist with sub speciality qualifications in ultrasound imaging working at the Mercy Hospital for Women in Melbourne. She completed medical school at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne in 1997, and specialist training at the Mercy Hospital for Women between 2000-2007. In 2003 she achieved the gold medal for the highest mark achieved in the MRANZCOG examination from the Royal Australian College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.
Sub-speciality training in ultrasound was completed between 2004 – 2008 through the Mercy Hospital for Women and Royal Women’s Hospital Melbourne.
In 2014, Kate travelled to Brazil to work with the imaging team specialising in the detection and classification of endometriosis. In gynaecological imaging she works closely with the Endometriosis unit in the development of ultrasound techniques to improve diagnosis and aid in surgical management. Working with the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, she is a consultant ultrasound specialist in adolescent / paediatric gynaecology imaging and continues research in this area. Kate has regularly given presentations in the areas of endometriosis and adolescent gynaecology imaging.
Endo, Ultrasound & MRI – Why?
Dr Natalie Yang MBBS, FRANZCR, MMed (Radiology)
Natalie is a consultant radiologist with sub-specialty interests in Women’s Imaging and MRI. She completed her medical training in 2000, graduating from Melbourne University with Honours. Upon completion of a 2-year residency at Royal Melbourne Hospital, she commenced 5 years of radiology training at Austin Health in 2003 – culminating in being awarded the HR Sear prize for most outstanding candidate in the Radiodiagnosis FRANZCR part 2 exams.
She completed 4 fellowships in Australia and Canada, specialising in Women’s and Body Imaging. Upon return to Australia she was appointed as a consultant radiologist at Austin Health in 2011, where she is currently director of Women’s Imaging, co-director of Fellowship Training and member of the radiology research committee. One of her subspecialty interests is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of endometriosis.
Together with the team at Mercy Hospital for Women in Heidelberg, Natalie has worked toward improving the imaging protocols, research and reporting of these subspecialty MRI studies – aiding the Mercy team in achieving management and surgical outcomes that improve the well being and health of women suffering from endometriosis.
Physio & Endo
Heba is a pelvic health physiotherapist and a women’s health nutrition & hormone coach. Having lived with persistent pelvic pain and endometriosis herself for over 15 years, Heba is a firm believer in an integrative and multidisciplinary approach to the management of endometriosis.
Heba is the Founder of The Pelvic Expert where she supports women with endometriosis and pelvic pain by providing women’s health physiotherapy, integrative nutrition, therapeutic exercise and pain neuroscience solutions. She regularly blogs and hosts educational webinars, including an Online Endometriosis Event called TENDO.
Heba serves as an advisor on the Endometriosis Special Interest Group of Endometriosis New Zealand.
Medical Cannabis & Pain
Justin Sinclair MHerbMed (USyd) BHSc (Nat) ND DBM Dip Nut
Justin is a Research Fellow at the National Institute of Complementary Medicine at Western Sydney University and Head of the newly formed Australian Medicinal Cannabis Research & Education Collaboration. He is also the Chief Scientist for United in Compassion’s Scientific Advisory Board, Australia’s leading patient advocacy group in the medicinal Cannabis space.
His scientific background is in pharmacognosy (drugs that come from plants), but his research extends into botany, ethnopharmacology, analytical phytochemistry and pathophysiology. He is currently a co-investigator on several clinical research projects in development around medicinal Cannabis and spends much of his time lecturing to medical practitioners, nurses, politicians and other allied health professionals about the therapeutic applications of this much maligned medicinal plant. He has published on the topics of cannabis and the endocannabinoid system, pain management and herb/drug interactions.
Nicolle Flint MP
Nicolle formed the Parliamentary Friends for Endometriosis Awareness with Gai Brodtmann. Nicolle Flint was elected as the federal Member for Boothby in 2016. She is the first woman to hold the seat since it was established in 1903. Nicolle serves on the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Tax and Revenue and the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audits.
Nicolle attended Flinders University in Boothby and graduated with a double degree in Law and Arts.
She has represented small and medium businesses at the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Canberra, provided policy advice to Liberal leaders Dr Brendan Nelson and Malcolm Turnbull, and more recently has worked as a columnist for The Advertiser and The Age newspapers. She is the co-author of the Menzies Research Centre Paper Gender and Politics which examines the representation of women in the Liberal Party.
Gai Brodtmann MP
In the spirit of bipartisanship, Gai Brodtmann formed the Parliamentary Friends for Endometriosis Awareness with fellow MP, Nicolle Flint. Gai was elected the Member for Canberra on 21 August 2010 and has extensive experience in the public, private and community sectors. Gai ran her own small business for ten years and was a federal public servant, primarily with Foreign Affairs and Trade and Attorney-General’s.
Gai’s public policy interests include cyber security, education, small business, defence, foreign affairs, superannuation, financial literacy, public administration and women’s empowerment.
Gai is the Shadow Assistant Minister for Cyber Security and Defence.