Farewell to 'Aunt Flo': A New Version of the Birth-Control Pill Would Limit Menstruation to Four Times a Year. Are Women Ready?

By Kalb, Claudia | Newsweek, February 3, 2003 | Go to article overview

Farewell to 'Aunt Flo': A New Version of the Birth-Control Pill Would Limit Menstruation to Four Times a Year. Are Women Ready?


Kalb, Claudia, Newsweek


Byline: Claudia Kalb

Ask a bunch of women if they enjoy getting monthly periods and a significant majority (at least according to our own water-cooler survey) will answer "No!" Still, a woman's cycle has long been seen as a healthy and inevitable part of reproductive life. That could soon change with a new version of the birth-control pill that dramatically reduces the number of periods a woman has every year, from 13 to 4. Now even menstruation turns out to be a lifestyle choice.

Doctors have been prescribing "menstrual suppression" off-label for years to treat endometriosis (an overgrowth of uterine tissue), menstrual migraines and PMS. And plenty of women have altered the pill's regimen to enjoy period-free vacations. Now, in addition to the new version of the pill, which manufacturer Barr Laboratories has submitted for FDA approval, makers of the birth-control patch and vaginal ring are also testing their products for continuous use. If the pill, called Seasonale, passes muster, women could reprogram their monthly cycles by the end of the year with government approval.

Seasonale contains the same ingredients as conventional birth-control pills, but will be packaged and prescribed differently: 84 active pills taken in a row, followed by seven placebos, as opposed to the traditional 21/7 regimen. Women do seem to want it. In a Dutch survey, two thirds of women between 15 and 49 said they'd prefer fewer periods. And when 318 women with painful periods were counseled on continuous oral contraception in a study led by Dr. Patricia Sulak at Texas A&M Medical School, 91 percent jumped at the chance to try it.

Many doctors believe cutting back on menstruation could be healthy. Researchers estimate that women now have three times as many periods (450 over a lifetime) as our hunter-gatherer ancestors, who started menstruating later and spent many more years pregnant or nursing. Menstruation can promote fibroids and endometriosis. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Farewell to 'Aunt Flo': A New Version of the Birth-Control Pill Would Limit Menstruation to Four Times a Year. Are Women Ready?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.