The record-breaking Olympic swimmer is raising awareness surrounding ulcerative colitis.
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor entered the international swimming world in 2011 after competing in the Shanghai World Championships. After being chosen as the youngest team member for Team GB at the 2012 Olympics, she was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. A chronic and frequently debilitating inflammatory bowel disease that affects almost 150,000 across the UK, UC can lead to a variety of medical issues and symptoms that can take a serious toll on work, life and general well-being. Scientists do not yet fully understand what causes UC, and while there is no cure yet available, it can be managed with medical care and ongoing treatment.
Speaking about her experience with the disease, Siobhan said: “UC symptoms can be debilitating and embarrassing – but to everyone around you, it can be invisible. Being open about my #UC has taught me a lot. It can often be misunderstood, but by being honest and talking to the people around me, I understood that there is no need to feel alone or embarrassed to ask for help.”
“I didn’t let my UC control me, or stop me from achieving my dreams!”Siobhan-Marie O’Connor
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor has excelled in her swimming career despite her diagnosis, taking home an Olympic silver medal in 2016 and a gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. This inspiring athlete has partnered with Pfizer to spread the word about ulcerative colitis: watch the full video and find out more about the condition here.
“It’s been an incredible opportunity to work on this campaign. Raising awareness of UC is so important. This campaign will get people talking about how common the disease is and how we can support close friends or family who continue to suffer from it.”Senior Talent Agent Natasha Hill