By Jessica Lubahn, MD
When I went to medical school, I never imagined that I would become a Urologist, much less start an underwear company. As rigorous as medical training is, there is something very comfortable about having a step-wise path that leads to a mostly stable endpoint. Entrepreneurship has been anything but comfortable, with no discernible blueprint to follow.
The merging of these dichotomies started soon after I began my first private practice job after residency. In my line of work, I directly bear witness to the impact incontinence has on my patients, as well as my close friends and family members. Incontinence can drive isolation and depression. I treat women and men with medications, nerve stimulators, botox, and even surgery. The distress may be great even when the leakage is “mild” from a medical standpoint due to the shame experienced by the patient.
The idea for leakproof underwear developed while I was on maternity leave, and I thought about extrapolating cloth diapering technology into stylish, adult underwear.
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Navigating the ins and outs of the fashion industry has been --- interesting. For a person with a scientific background, negotiating the lack of standardization at every level was eye opening. For instance, there is no encyclopedia of general fabric properties. Juxtaposed to the urgency of medicine, steps in business seemed to move at a snail’s pace.
To enjoy this environment, certain characteristics apply:
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I wish I knew what I know now, and I think that I could have created this brand through a much more efficient route. However, mistakes helped me really learn about the production process.
In the end, this company has been quite complementary to my medical practice. It has brought me more joy to my own practice, as it has made me a better listener to the pain points of my patients. It has challenged me, not only from a treatment standpoint, but also to think of more inventive ways to look at their problems.
About the Author: Dr. Jessica Lubahn, MD is a medical doctor and urologist. She is a health writer and consultant and is the creator of ONDRwear (ondrwear.com) which are plant-based leak proof underwear for preventing leaks.
Instagram: ONDRwear (@ondrwear) • Instagram photos and videos
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