Women's Gynecologic Health

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9781284076028: Women's Gynecologic Health
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Women’s Gynecologic Health, Third Edition is a trusted, comprehensive, and evidence-based text that presents women’s gynecologic health from a woman-centered and holistic viewpoint. Encompassing both health promotion and management of gynecologic conditions, it provides clinicians and students with a strong foundation in gynecologic care and the knowledge necessary to apply it in clinical practice. With an emphasis on the importance of respecting the normalcy of female physiology, it is an essential reference for all women’s healthcare providers.

The Third Edition includes four new chapters on prenatal and postpartum care, including anatomy and physiologic adaptations of normal pregnancy, diagnosis of pregnancy and overview of prenatal care, common complications of pregnancy, and postpartum care. Thoughtfully updated and revised, it features expanded content on often underrepresented populations and topics, such as caring for lesbian, bisexual, queer, transgender, and gender non-conforming individuals, intimate partner violence, and sexual assault.

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From the Author:

Historically, women's health was framed within a biomedical model by clinicians. Textbooks typically used a biomedical framework to present women's health content. Although this approach can be useful on many levels, it also has limitations that can have significant negative effects on women's health, particularly gynecologic health. A biomedical model is disease oriented and focuses on curing illness--an approach that risks pathologizing normal aspects of female physiology. When a biomedical lens is used to assess women's health, there is a risk of essentializing women and reducing them to their biologic parts. As an example of this proclivity, women's health is frequently used to mean reproductive health, regardless of whether the woman plans to bear children. This reductionism transfers to practice when a woman's parts become the focus of diagnosis and treatment. The meaning of the diagnosis to the woman, as well as the impact that the diagnosis has on her, her significant others, and the work she does, is not addressed in this approach.Feminist theories about women's growth and development provide a different perspective from earlier male-oriented models because they include women's lived experiences and the importance of relationships to women. Recognizing each woman as an expert knower supports women's agency. The focus with this approach is holistic, with health being assessed within the context of each woman's life. It is important for our readers to know that we, as the editors of this book, are experienced women's health clinicians whose practice philosophy is grounded in caring for the whole woman within her lived experience. As teachers, we were repeatedly frustrated by our inability to locate a gynecologic textbook that we felt was suitable for our course. Many of the books that were available were written primarily from a biomedical perspective and, in our opinion, did not provide sufficient content about the normalcy of women's reproductive physiology. Books such as those authored by the Boston Women's Health Book Collective were extremely helpful with ideas about health and holism, but lacked the necessary content to educate student clinicians. Other books did not provide the health-oriented perspective that is vital to the philosophy of care espoused by nursing and midwifery, in which we both strongly believe. Additional books provided elements of both biomedical and health-oriented views and had very useful decision trees or categorization of concerns or problems. However, we felt that these books would not encourage students and practicing clinicians to think critically and to appreciate the importance of making decisions based on the most recent evidence.For these myriad reasons, we embarked on producing a book that presents women's gynecologic health from a woman-centered and holistic viewpoint. Our goal was to create a book that emphasizes the importance of respecting the normalcy of female physiology, and provides clinical content appropriate for assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of pathology. We believe this book embodies these perspectives and underlines the importance of collaboration among clinicians.Some aspects of this feminist approach will be obvious to our readers, whereas others may be more subtle. For example, we used illustrations of whole women, rather than pictures of only breasts or genitalia, when possible. We refer to a woman who has a specific condition rather than referring to the woman by her condition. For example, we speak of the woman who has HIV, as opposed to the HIV-positive woman. We use the term birth as opposed to deliverybecause it situates the power to give birth within the woman versus transferring it to the clinician. We purposefully use women's rather than gynecologic as the first word of this book's title. Our intention in making these deliberate choices was to encourage readers to keep first in their mind that they are treating a whole woman, not her body parts, and not just a condition. We hope that this approach emphasizes the importance of treating women holistically within their lived experiences.We were fortunate to have many excellent contributors to this book. Some are nationally known; others might be new to many readers. The common thread among all of our contributors is their expertise in their respective areas and their recognition of the importance of evidence-based practice. Our contributors are expert clinicians, educators, and scientists. Frequently co-authored chapters represent a clinician and researcher team, whose collaboration provides readers with a real-world view that is grounded in evidence.This book encompasses both health promotion and management of gynecologic conditions that women experience. All of the content is evidence based. The first section introduces the feminist framework that permeates the book and provides readers with a context for evaluating evidence and determining best practice. The second section provides a foundation for assessment and promotion of women's gynecologic health. The third section addresses the evaluation and management of clinical conditions frequently encountered in gynecologic health care. The fourth section provides an introduction to prenatal and postpartum care.We are gratified by how well the first two editions of this book were received by clinicians, students, and faculty, and it was an honor to receive the Book of the Year Award from the American College of Nurse-Midwives for both previous editions. In this third edition ofWomen's Gynecologic Health, we have updated, and in many cases extensively revised, all of the chapters from the second edition to ensure comprehensive content that reflects current standards of care. For example, the chapter on health care for individuals who are lesbian, bisexual, queer, or transgender has been extensively updated, as have the chapters on intimate partner violence and sexual assault. In response to requests from a significant number of educators and readers, we have added four new chapters that provide an introduction to pregnancy and postpartum care.We believe this edition builds upon the precedents set in the previous editions and hope it contributes to women receiving evidence-based, holistic, gynecologic care within their lived experiences. As before, we welcome feedback from our readers that will help us in future editions.Kerri Durnell Schuiling, PhD, NP-BC, CNM, FACNM, FAANFrances E. Likis, DrPH, NP-BC, CNM, FACNM, FAAN

About the Author:

Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs, Northern Michigan University, Marquette, Michigan, Co-editor-in-Chief, International Journal of Childbirth

Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Nursing, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee

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