Medicalizing Young Women - A Dangerous Trend

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image  A new drug just approved by the FDA, “Lybrel,” is one of a new breed of pharmaceuticals that profoundly interfere with a woman’s menstrual cycle. While a few members of the medical establishment have questioned their safety and value, these drugs have received precious little public discussion. In her forthcoming book “What Women MUST Know To Protect Their Daughters From Breast Cancer,”  a pioneering voice in the women’s health movement sounds a serious warning about these strange new interventions in the order of nature.

by Dr. Sherrill Sellman

These days, young women are besieged by many challenges.  Social
pressures, economic concerns, health problems, schoolwork, and family
tensions all tilt the stress barometer into the dangerous red zone.
Skipping meals, eating junk food along with starvation diets have
become a way of life for teenagers.  More than ever, young women seem
to be burning the candle at both ends.

Women’s life styles and behaviors directly affect their physical and
emotional wellbeing, both for the short and long term.  It’s no
wonder that their hormonal health is under attack.  Premenstrual
Syndrome (PMS), painful periods, irregular or absent periods, ovarian
cysts, polycystic ovaries, fibrocystic breast disease (lumpy, painful
breasts) endometriosis, hormonal migraines, fibroids, acne,
allergies, fatigue and mood swings are occurring in young women at
epidemic rates.  Many girls try to ignore their health problems
hoping they will disappear.  Others schedule appointments with their
doctors.  Odds on, they will leave the doctor’s office with either a
prescription drug or some version of the Birth Control Pill.

Rather than perceiving hormonal imbalances as aberrations created by
the many abuses of modern life.  Medicine has convinced women that
menstruation itself, is the problem and those natural menstrual
cycles are dangerous, disease producing and require medical
intervention.  Doctors have also convinced many women that their
ovaries are the villains behind their health problems and emotional
turmoil.  The solution: shut it down.  The method: some form of birth

The erroneous notion that menstruation is a rather unpleasant, toxic
process has been around for a hundreds, if not thousands of years.
So has the belief that the source of a woman’s suffering resides
within her ovaries, uterus and her menstrual flow.

In a syndicated column written by a well-known Australian doctor a
reader asked the following question. “My doctor told me recently that
monthly periods were now regarded by some as a ‘disease’ and totally
preventable. Is this true?”  His reply. “Why should women be burdened
with loss of valuable blood each month, which is often not
manufactured in similar amounts, often leading to anemia and chronic
tiredness?  Taking the active ingredients of the oral contraceptive
pill daily, with no seven-day break solves the problem.”

The sentiment that periods are a disease - or at least a most
unwelcome, unproven and unsafe physiological process - reflects a
growing trend amongst both physicians and pharmaceutical companies to
promote the theory that menstrual cycles should be eliminated.
Leading the charge to eradicate menstruation is Dr. Elsimar Coutinho,
Professor of Gynecology, Obstetrics and Human Reproduction in Brazil.
In his book, “Is Menstruation Obsolete?” Dr. Coutinho argues that
monthly bleeding is not the “natural” state of women and that
actually places them at risk of various medical conditions.  The
author maintains that menstruation is neither medically meaningful
nor sound.  He asserts that prehistoric women had fewer than 160
periods in their lifetime.  On the other hand, modern women, start
menstruating earlier, and spend less time pregnant, and have more
than 400 menstrual cycles. 

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Enlightening article. Many Thanks.

Regards, Keith Johnson

Posted by Keith Johnson  on  09/29  at  07:03 AM
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