Women's Health and Education Center (WHEC)


List of Articles

  • Toxic Shock Syndrome
    Toxic shock syndrome (TSS) was first described in children in 1978 but was quickly identified as an illness occurring primarily in menstruating women 12-24 years of age. During the 1979-1981 epidemic, tampon users were demonstrated to be 18 times more likely to develop menstrual TSS than non-users. Recent focus has shifted in conjunction with wound infections, postpartum endometritis and vaginitis; the predominance of cases continues to be related to menstruation. The purpose of this document is to understand the pathogenesis of toxic shock syndrome (TSS), clinical picture, early diagnosis and the latest advances in treatment. Of the approximately 30 million menstruating women in USA, it is estimated that 70% use tampons and over 50% of those use super-absorbent types. Almost 1,000,000 women are at theoretic risk. The incidence in menstruating women is now 6-7: 100,000 annually. The incidence on non-menstrual disease has shown only a slight increase in the past 10 years.

  • Endometriosis
    Endometriosis is the presence of tissue that resembles normal endometrium at site outside of the uterus. The anatomical areas most commonly affected by endometriosis are the ovaries, the pelvic peritoneum, the uterosacral ligaments, the fallopian tubes, the appendix and the bowel serosa. Endometriomas, or "chocolate cysts" are cysts of endometriosis within the ovary. The "gold standard" for diagnosing endometriosis is laparoscopy, with visual recognition of endometriosis lesions. The severity of endometriosis is defined by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine using a surgical staging system based on the size and location of endometriosis implants and the severity of pelvic scarring. The stages are: Stage I-minimal, Stage II-mild, Stage III-moderate and Stage IV-severe.

  • Uterine Myomas: A Comprehensive Review
    Uterine leiomyomata are among the most frequent entities encountered in the practice of gynecology. It occurs in 20-40% of women during their reproductive years. Approximately 600,000 hysterectomies are performed per year in the United States for uterine myomas. Many surgical procedures other than hysterectomy are also commonly performed to deal with myomas. The purpose of this document is to review the literature and medical and surgical advances in the management of uterine myomas. Authors hope this helps healthcare providers the decision-making process as logical as possible.

  • Menopause: A Close-Up Look
    As the life expectancy has increased markedly, more and more women are living longer after menopause. In western society, women can anticipate living for approximately 80 years, spending more than one third of their lives in the postmenopausal period. Menopause refers to the complete or permanent cessation of menstruation; an interval of 6 to 12 months of amenorrhea is usually necessary to establish the diagnosis of menopause. The biologic event of menopause marks a meaningful life passage for every woman. It is a transition made from the reproductive stage of life to the non-reproductive stage. This transition is the period of declining ovarian function, which usually becomes apparent clinically over the 2 to 5 years around menopause. The population of postmenopausal women continues to rise; currently approximately 470 million women in the world are of age 50 and older- a figure that is projected to increase to 1.2 billion by 2030. It is estimated that 25 million women each year pass into menopause. Several studies have shown that both the number of cigarettes smoked and the duration of smoking affects the onset of menopause and it induces earlier menopause.

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