Annastacia Palaszczuk has put a devastating fertility battle and two broken marriages behind her to find romance in lockdown with a high-profile surgeon.
The blossoming romance marks a new beginning for a state leader who has previously opened up about her struggle to conceive a child.
Ms Palaszczuk suffers from endometriosis, a disease in which tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus grows outside and attaches itself to other organs.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has been married twice before but has no children due to fertility issues linked to endometriosis
The Queensland premier is in a new relationship with Dr Reza Adib
Symptoms include pain, heavy periods and fatigue, as well as a higher risk of infertility and bowel and bladder problems.
The condition is estimated to affect one in 10 Australian women. There is currently no cure for endometriosis.
She was diagnosed with the disease after severe symptoms emerged in her late 30s and she suffered a miscarriage.
‘I just thought that the headaches and the cramps and everything were normal. I didn’t realise …,’ she told The Courier Mail. ‘Then I found out it wasn’t.’
She was told surgery was the only way to discover the full extent of the disease and to increase her fertility.
During this initial surgery, it was found the condition had grown so severe it had moved to just underneath her lungs.
Following the removal surgery, Ms Palaszczuk underwent four years of IVF with her then-husband Simon Every.
The two were married between 2004 and 2009.
However she never became pregnant and was diagnosed as infertile.
She has no children from her two marriages.
Ms Palaszczuk was married to journalist and author George Megalogenis from 1996 to 1998.
In 2019, Ms Palaszczuk separated from her long-time partner one-time Labour staffer Shaun Drabsch. The pair ‘amicably’ split after they started dating before the 2015 January election.
Ms Palaszczuk (pictured) has found love in lockdown after two marriages and a battle with fertility
Mr Dransch joined the public sector after working as an advisor to former premier Peter Beattie.
‘He is a very warm and caring, intelligent man with a great sense of humour, and we are just enjoying getting to know each other.’
Ms Palaszczuk was pictured with the dashing Dr Adib at the Caloundra Cup at the Sunshine Coast Turf Club on July 11, leading to speculation the pair were romantically linked.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk is dating the multi-millionaire Brisbane doctor, who specialises in weight loss surgery. Ms Palaszczuk was pictured with Dr Reza Adib at the Caloundra Cup at the Sunshine Coast Turf Club on July 11 (above)
In one photograph the father of two had his arm around the smiling premier as she leaned in towards him on the course rail. In another they were seated together at a table inside.
The twice-married Ms Palaszczuk unveiled a glamorous makeover late last month during one of her daily Covid-19 press conferences, raising speculation there had been other changes in her private circumstances.
The 52-year-old has previously said her personal life had fallen by the wayside as a result of her political career and that her busy schedule made looking for love almost impossible.
The twice-married Ms Palaszczuk unveiled a glamorous makeover late last month during one of her daily Covid-19 press conferences, raising speculation there had been other changes in her private life. She is pictured with her new hairstyle and makeup
‘It’s simply not true that we all need a partner to be fulfilled,’ she said two years ago.
‘It’s lovely when it’s the right person of course, but it is very possible to be single and very happy.’
Ms Palaszczuk’s media chief Shane Doherty flatly denied any knowledge of his boss’s relationship with Dr Adib on Friday afternoon.
‘I don’t know about the premier’s private life and I’m not going to ask,’ he told Daily Mail Australia. ‘And I’ve never heard that name.’
Dr Reza Adib is the CEO of Brisbane Obesity Clinic. A general and laparoscopic surgeon, he began his career at the Royal Brisbane Hospital in 1994 and established the Brisbane Obesity Clinic in 2004
Ms Palaszczuk has spoken of her unfilled desire to have children, which she attributed to suffering from endometriosis, a debilitating condition which can impact fertility.
Her severe case of endometriosis was diagnosed after a miscarriage with her second husband Simon Every, following an exploratory laparoscopy.
Dr Adib, a general and laparoscopic surgeon, began his career at the Royal Brisbane Hospital in 1994 and established the Brisbane Obesity Clinic in 2004.
Ms Palaszczuk is pictured with Dr Adib at the Caloundra Cup on July 11, with the images fuelling speculation the pair were romantically linked – a fact the premier confirmed on Friday
Dr Adib lives in a three-level, five-bedroom, five-bathroom mansion at Indooroopilly which property records show he bought for $6.25million a decade ago. The house is pictured
Brisbane Obesity Clinic’s website boasts Dr Adib has performed more than 20,000 operations and more than 5,000 weight-loss procedures.
‘Dr Adib has studied in Australia, England, Scotland, France and Austria,’ the website states.
‘This broad international background puts him in a unique position to understand and treat a wide range of people from a variety of backgrounds and environments.
‘Our patients travel from all over Australia to be under Dr Adib’s quality care, knowing they will achieve the best results.’
Dr Adib lives in a three-level, five-bedroom, five-bathroom mansion at Indooroopilly which property records show he bought a decade ago for $6.25million.
The landmark house is ‘inspired by the grandeur of traditional 14th Century Italian Villas’ and features ‘the finest materials from around the world.’
‘This lavishly regal home is the absolute pinnacle of building construction and design,’ real estate marketing gushed when it was last sold.
‘One of the first truly authentic Mediterranean style homes constructed in Brisbane, this expansive estate proudly stands on more than half an acre of some of the most prized riverfront land in Brisbane.’
Dr Adib’s landmark house is ‘inspired by the grandeur of traditional 14th Century Italian Villas’ and features ‘the finest materials from around the world’. The house is pictured
‘This lavishly regal home is the absolute pinnacle of building construction and design,’ real estate marketing gushed of Dr Adib’s home when it was last sold. The house is pictured
Dr Adib does not have a strong social media presence and has rarely been in the news.
In June 2019 the Courier-Mail reported he had been trapped in a packed lift with retried NRL star Sam Thaiday at Doomben race course on Ladies’ Oaks Day.
Dr Reza Adib’s career
1994: Began surgical career at the Royal Brisbane Hospital as a surgical trainee
1996: Selected to join the Advanced Surgical Program
2000: Became a Fellow of The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons
2000 to 2004: Fellow of The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
2004: Established the Obesity Clinic in Brisbane
2016: Nominated as board member for Australian & New Zealand Metabolic and Obesity Surgery Society
2017: Nominated as co-chairman of the Wesley Hospital’s Bariatric Centre of Excellence
2018: Bariatric Surgery Registry – Leading Contributor 2017 recognition
2018: Surgeon of Excellence Award – Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, The Wesley Hospital
Source: Brisbane Obesity Clinic
Witnesses said Dr Adib and Thaiday were able to force the lift door open after ten minutes.
Ms Palaszczuk has been under increasing pressure over her state’s handling of Covid, particularly the harsh border lockdowns keeping families apart.
Federal Labor has also distanced itself from Ms Palaszczuk’s demands that children under 12 should be vaccinated before she opens her state’s border.
On Friday she made a humbling apology for letting NRL players’ wives and officials into her state while the hotel quarantine program was paused for two weeks, saying it was the ‘wrong decision’.
Last month she copped criticism from Queenslanders for posting a selfie of her glamorous new hair and makeup look online while a pile of papers marked ‘urgent’ sat unattended in the background.
Ms Palaszczuk showcased her fresh look on August 25, shedding her typical natural appearance in favour of deep red lipstick and freshly curled locks.
Later that evening she she shared a selfie on Twitter featuring her makeover as she sat behind her office desk.
‘Thanks for all the work you’re doing, Queenslanders. Keep staying safe,’ she wrote.
Social media users looking at the photo suggested the premier should deal with the files marked ‘urgent’ she had sitting on her desk rather than racking up ‘likes’ on the platform.
‘Finish the work in the “Urgent” tray before taking your selfies,’ one person said.
‘You literally have work marked “Urgent”. Really great time to stop and take a selfie and show off your nice little purse,’ another wrote.
A third commented: ‘Make sure you whack that two inches of make up before your selfie. I have not seen my son since March this year cause of these stupid lock downs. Miss him so much.’
Dr Adib’s home was described as ‘one of the first truly authentic Mediterranean style homes constructed in Brisbane, this expansive estate proudly stands on more than half an acre of some of the most prized riverfront land in Brisbane’
Ms Palaszczuk has previously said her personal life had fallen by the wayside as a result of her political career and the 52-year-old’s busy schedule made looking for love almost impossible
Others praised Ms Palaszczuk for her revamped image and thanked her for running the state.
‘Looking very glam there premier! And doing a bloody good job too,’ one person complimented.
‘I know this is off point but you look stunning!’ another wrote. ‘Looking very pretty and healthy,’ said a third.
Ms Palaszczuk, who lives in a relatively humble home in Brisbane’s south-west, was married to journalist George Megalogenis from 1996 to 1998 and Simon Every from 2004 to 2009.
She has spoken candidly of how the breakdown of her marriage to Mr Every – former chief of staff to onetime Labor senator Joe Ludwig – came after years of unsuccessful rounds of IVF treatment.
Ms Palaszczuk announced in February 2018 her split from partner of three years Shaun Drabsch, an infrastructure adviser who previously worked for Labor premier Peter Beattie.
Annastacia Palaszczuk confirms new romance after fertility issues and two broken marriages