Women are all too familiar with the struggle to get their symptoms taken seriously by doctors. These are their stories, plus pro tips for how you can take charge of that gut feeling that something's wrong.

It Happened to Me: Real talk from women who've been there

It Took 10 Years of Seizures for This Woman to Be Diagnosed With Epilepsy
Chrissy Spears had her first major seizure when she was 24. Doctors said it was caused by an adverse reaction to medicine, but as the seizures continued to strike, she began to suspect something more serious.
A Doctor Told This 24-Year-Old the Red Bumps Covering Her Body Were Bug Bites—But She Actually Had Psoriasis
Claire Spurgin had no idea what she was dealing with when she suddenly developed the splotchy red spots. It took months to get the right diagnosis—and then come to grips with it emotionally.
This Woman's Lower Back Pain Turned Out to Be Stage 4 Rectal Cancer
Colleen Farrell, now 40, thought she was dealing with a pulled muscle, but it turned out to be a condition she thought she had prevented.
This Woman's 'Gluten Intolerance' Turned Out to Be Uterine Cancer
Dafina Malovska, now 41, had to deal with extreme bloating for several months before seeing the specialist she needed in another country.
This 24-Year-Old Discovered She Had Pulsatile Tinnitus After Posting Her Symptoms in a Facebook Group
"There's nothing medically wrong with you" a neurosurgeon told Adina Martin after she'd been hearing her heartbeat whooshing in her ears for months. So she found a community of people who helped her get the right diagnosis.
This Woman’s Searing Toothache Was Misdiagnosed by Doctors, and It Turned Out to Be Cancer
As her toothache turned into constant debilitating jaw pain, Nicole Kowalski, 28, was treated for everything from a sinus infection to allergies.

More Misdiagnosed

This Woman Had Endometriosis Since She Was a Teen, but Doctors Insisted Her Symptoms Were All in Her Head
The pain started when 22-year-old Madelyn Morneault got her first period at 13 and became unbearable by her sophomore year of college. Doctors blamed depression, anxiety, and grief—until surgery showed something different. 
Before She Was Diagnosed With Multiple Sclerosis, This Dancer and DJ Saw 14 Specialists
It took three years and countless doctors and physical therapists for Diane Palaganas, 36, to find out what was really causing the leg tremors and weakness that made it increasingly difficult to continue her dancing career.

You Got This: How to be your own advocate