When Figtree resident Anna Gerard set up an online endometriosis support group several years ago, she discovered many other women shared her "invisible illness".
The ENDO no Facebook site, which now has more than 1100 followers, enables women to share their stories without the judgement, or skepticism, they're often faced with.
"Endometriosis affects one in 10 women - yet the majority of health professionals are still not educated to our cause," Ms Gerard said.
"That's why it takes on average seven years to even get a diagnosis. It took me longer than that, with many doctors putting my symptoms down to stress, to gluten - some thought it was all in my head.
"So when I was finally diagnosed in 2013, when my specialist told me, 'I'm so sorry, you have endometriosis', I cried with happiness because it was validation that it was something real."
News this week that the Federal Government has committed $10 million for endometriosis research and awareness, was further validation for Ms Gerard.
As it would have been for each of the 700,000 Australian women who have the crippling condition where uterine tissue grows outside the uterus, causing inflammation and debilitating pain.
Included in the funding is $9 million for research that will lead to non-invasive diagnostic testing, and a better understanding of the causes and underlying factors that lead to the development and progression of the disease.
In addition a University of Adelaide research institute will receive just over $1 million to develop a digital health platform for endometriosis research and support.
"This funding is a win for endo sufferers," Ms Gerard said. "The research will revolutionise the way this disease is looked at, and how it is treated."
Currently there's no cure for endometriosis, and limited treatment options.
"Endo often has co-morbidity with other conditions, and I'd had recurring urinary tract infections and digestive issues for many years with no apparent cause," Ms Gerard, 32, said.
"I'd experience discomfort every day, but during ovulation I'd have intense pain, fatigue and muscle aches, and painful cramping and heavy bleeding during my period.
"Once I was diagnosed I underwent a laparoscopy to remove the endometriosis lesions. For the first six months afterwards I felt the best I'd ever felt, then it started to come back."
Ms Gerard is now considering more surgery, yet wishes there were other treatments available - or even one day, a cure.
"I'm hoping this research being funded will come up with better treatment, better options for pain relief," she said.
"I'm a musician but I've had to stop that and work from home. It's a battle, I have all these motivations and dreams and my body just wants to rest - and I don't want to rest. I just want to live my life."
The government funding will be guided by the first National Action Plan for Endometriosis, which was launched in July 2018.