Excerpt: 'No More Periods'

ByABC News via logo
April 28, 2003, 4:05 PM

April 29 -- In her new book, No More Periods?, Dr. Susan Rako argues that manipulating women's menstrual cycles so that they no longer have periods is dangerous. Though widely covered in the media, it needs a more careful look from experts, she says.

Chapter One

No More Periods?

The Washington Post, September 7, 2000, A Pill to Uncramp Women's Style Libby Copeland, Staff Writer

I think we have to disabuse health professionals and women of the idea that monthly menstruation is natural, normal and healthy. Dr. David Grimes University of North Carolina Professor of Gynecology

We're into the era of medicine making life more convenient. Dr. Charlotte Ellertson

The Lancet March 11, 2000

Nuisance or natural and healthy: should monthly menstruation be optional for women?

Continuous use of ordinary oral contraceptives safely lets women control whether and when they choose to bleed.

When such a safe, simple, and inexpensive treatment is already so widely available, women should not have to be driven loony by their lunar cycles if they prefer not to bleed each month. Charlotte Ellertson, Ph.D. Population Council, Latin America and the Caribbean "thanks to Elsimar Coutinho for ideas and suggestions"

Chicago Daily Herald December 11, 2000

No More Period. Period. Lorilyn Rackl, Daily Herald Health Writer

Unless you're trying to get pregnant, there's no physiological reason to have a monthly period.

The drum beat for fewer periods definitely is getting louder, leaving some experts to predict the feminine hygiene aisles at Wal-Mart will one day be a lot less crowded.

I know the tampon and pad people don't want to hear this. I routinely put women on birth control pills and have them not take their last week's pills to suppress their periods. A lot of them love it. Dr. Teresa Ann Hoffman, Gynecologist Mercy Medical Center, Baltimore

I have this box of tampons in my cupboard and I told my sister the other day, "God, I gotta throw these out, because they're so old they'd probably be dangerous."

The longer you go without a period, the more you realize you didn't need it. There's a certain freedom to not having to plan Kotex in your luggage. Leslie Miller, M.D., Assistant Professor Obstetrics/Gynecology University of Washington

And from the "Health Science" section of my hometown newspaper full page:

The Boston Globe August 22, 2000, Megan Scott, Globe Correspondent

NO chocolate cravings No PMS or bloating No fatigue or moodiness What if having your period was a choice?

It's up to you.

This article goes on to quote Dr. Freedolph Anderson, director of clinical research at the Institute for Reproductive Medicine of Eastern Virginia Medical School:

There's really no good medical reason for menstruation.

The Wall Street Journal June 25, 2002

Doctors Push New Efforts to Eliminate Women's Periods.

Tara Parker-Pope, in "Health Journal"

If we're not offering it [period suppression] routinely to women, they don't know this is an option. They don't know how healthy it can be for them. Anita Nelson, M.D. Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology University of California at Los Angeles