Menstrual Disorders

Menstrual Disorders

Menstrual Disorders

Menstrual Disorders


Based on women's experience, the authors challenge orthodox thinking on menstruation and disorders associated with it. The study will prompt health workers to rethink their approaches to menstrual phenomena.


Despite the fact that many women with menstrual disorders do not consult their doctor, the complaint still ranks among the ten conditions most frequent in general practice. In this book Annette and Graham Scambler first present the medical perspective on menstrual disorders, where they consider the nature of medical diagnosis and the basis for intervention. The difficulties of assessment of ‘normal’ menses versus ‘abnormal’ menses are carefully considered, and the way in which society’s attitudes have impinged upon the understanding, diagnosis and treatment of menstrual disorders is discussed. The authors then present a carefully measured perspective to show how the issue of gender, which has invaded the medical perspective on menstrual disorders, creates difficulties for women in their dealings with the medical profession.

Annette and Graham Scambler are well placed to write a book on menstruation and menstrual disorders. They have been examining issues around menstrual disorders for some years and are able to draw on their own research to present women’s own descriptions of their experience of menstrual disorders and their treatment. These experiences vividly illustrate the impact of this problem on women and their attempts to seek help.

This book attempts to challenge traditional concepts of menstruation and menstrual disorders through a sympathetic examination of women’s experiences. The authors present the reader with a new perspective with which to view menstrual disorders. They do not, however, limit their book to a critique and an altered perspective, but in their final chapter consider an alternative way of behaving for health workers who wish to tackle this problem in a way which is sensitive to women’s own perspective of the problem. In this way Annette and Graham Scambler demonstrate how an understanding of the origins of current treatment and management of menstrual disorders can lead to a new and improved approach to this common problem.

Ray Fitzpatrick and Stanton Newman, 1992

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