Creative Design: Professional

Functional Trousers for People with Endometriosis: A User-Centered Approach

  • Miriam Keegan (University of Delaware)
  • Cara McKenna (University of Delaware)
  • Adriana Gorea (University of Delaware)


Endometriosis is a gynecological disorder that consists of the presence of endometrial-like tissue outside the uterus and can often be associated with a chronic, inflammatory reaction and severe pelvic pain. People with endometriosis can live undiagnosed for years, and it is estimated that about 10% of females around the world suffer from this chronic condition. There is currently no curative treatment for this disease, and pain management remains the priority of people suffering from symptoms of this condition. People with endometriosis are encouraged to continue to live their social lives and to try stick-on heat patches that apply heat for a short period of time to alleviate the symptoms of the condition.The objective of this study was to design trousers that would be comfortable, adaptable, and functional for people with endometriosis, with a focus on incorporating inner abdomen pockets to hold portable heating devices, whether it be electronic/microwavable/stick-on, and incorporating users’ expressive and aesthetic needs. Following the FEA Consumer Needs Model, user needs of people with endometriosis when it comes to the apparel they wish to wear while experiencing symptoms were surveyed. This design is original and innovative by: (a) developing a functional apparel design for people with endometriosis experiencing symptoms such as ‘endo belly’ (severe bloating); (b) ensuring comfort and style are both equally catered for in the design process, and (c) addressing a niche market that has traditionally been unrecognized in their diagnosis and providing a solution to help with symptoms while not compromising on style, filling a gap in the adaptive apparel market.

Keywords: adaptive design, functional apparel, user-centered design

How to Cite:

Keegan, M., McKenna, C. & Gorea, A., (2024) “Functional Trousers for People with Endometriosis: A User-Centered Approach”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 80(1). doi:



Published on
24 Jan 2024
Peer Reviewed