For my Caring Friends, here's a preview of my newest book, written before the doctor dropped me on the floor in March, 2013. I wrote this book (many of you will understand) because I'm not sure if I'll live long enough to see my daughter live through all the stages of womanhood: the maiden, the mother, and the crone.
Book Cover Photo. Archives of the Vagina: A Journey through Time.
The book starts with my first period, and is very tongue-in-cheek humorous, because we all know where we were when we started our first period. Then I go through history, sociology, anatomy, and the endocrinology of the ovaries.
I discuss what Aristotle thought of menstruation and menopause, how William T. Stead is a hero we never hear about for rescuing children out of prostitution in London's brothels. This book is filled with the sociology of menstruation, including whether women on their periods can fly a plane, and whether women who are camping on their periods attract bear attacks that lead to death.
One of the most surprising statistics that I learned in my research and interviews of women is that in the USA, in women over 45 years old, 40% have had a hysterectomy. Of these, nearly 50% have had normal ovaries removed without proper Informed Consent. I dedicate an entire chapter to "Ovarian Conservation" (i.e., keeping your ovaries), and give you all the risk factors you need to know so you can put yourself on the Chart to see if you are at risk for ovarian cancer, and hence should get them removed. So my next book will be Hysterectomy can be Hell. I hope to get an Army behind me on this one, because it will take a Movement to change our culture. And changing a culture always means that people won't like you. Believe me. I've been there before.
I discuss the HPV vaccination for girls aged 11-12, starting your period, how to put in a tampon, and introduce what most women don't know: the menstrual cup, and the nondisposable pad. I promote a certain program that helps girls in Africa obtain menstrual pads so they don't have to miss school, be drop-outs, get pregnant, contract HIV, attain a lower socioeconomic status, and die earlier than the girls that are more educated. So expect a Movement there, too, ladies and girls.
I go through the Women's Health Initiative and basically tear it to shreds, because it had, in my opinion, no application to women in menopause suffering symptoms of vaginal dryness and hot flashes. I let you skip a very medical chapter if you would like, but I also put it in there for medical personnel to evaluate it for themselves. I dissect menopause and give the man's perspective, too, hopefully leading you to more self-discovery and compassionate understanding. Pretty funny stories there, too, my friend.
The last half of the book is dedicated to such things as Invisible Diseases, the Low Glycemic Diet, Immunonutrition and Fish Oil, Telemeres, Living for not only Health & Wellness but also for Quality of Life, Caregiving (and the effects on women, by ethnicity), Long-Term care, and death and dying. I empower you to ask questions, eat Spoon by Spoon, and Don't Fall when you are elderly. I tired of seeing women come into the Operating Room for hip fractures from a fall. You need to know your bone density, and take your Vitamin D or Calcium. The role of an Endocrinologist in your care can not be underestimated. I also believe that Cenegenics has an excellent program for Concierge Medicine, private pay by cash, that is mostly utilized by Presidents and CEOs of companies. They are mostly men. This needs to change, because there are plenty of millionaire women out there. And women need to stop spending all their time nurturing others, and start spending some time nurturing themselves. So I took all this knowledge in my head and told it to you before my traumatic brain injury and DI occurred; and I thank God that I did it.
There. I said it. My opinion rings throughout this book, and it is backed up by over 200 Stanford-quality references that are NIH-funded. I list them all for you, and many of them are dated in 2012 and 2013. Nothing but the best for you, my friends. Nothing but the best. Be prepared to learn, to grow, and to ROCK your WORLD. You can PRE-ORDER the book (Mother's Day launch date) on Tate Publishing Bookstore. My official site is Open now, and you can Shop or Virtual Shop and well, I just....I hope you like it.
I'm just learning that robotic laparoscopy for hysterectomy or myomectomy can cause death by spreading the cancer as the blade spins like a razor. There's no way to catch whether or not the patient has cancer preoperatively. Go to Change.org to appeal to our Congressmen/women to STOP this manner of spreading stage IV cancer to women, giving them a death sentence.
This is a LOADED issue, but it is a clear-cut one. There is no confusion. Changes have been instituted in other countries, but the place where this started, Harvard's Brigham and Young's Hospital refuses to take a stance against the obvious. Pass it on! Women, we need to stand by this female anesthesiologist Dr. Amy Reed, and help America get back on track FOR Women's Health. Her husband and CardioThoracic Surgeon Dr. Hooman Noorchashm is leading the cause, ladies. We can't leave him without support. He is endlessly fighting for us, and he's a surgeon1 A CardioThoracic surgeon! He does open heart surgery, heart transplantations, heart valve replacements, uses the Bypass machine, and probably does lung transplantations, lung tumor removals, and literally holds a heart in his hands several times a week. He shouldn't have the kind of time he has put into this effort on behalf of his wife. Together, they have 6 children.
As if the rate of hysterectomies wasn't bad enough already, this is a completely new matter that leaves a woman devastated.
* After 5 years of morcellation of a leiomyosarcoma, only 15% of women will be alive.
* After "accidental morcellation", the average lifespan of the woman is only 24 - 36 months.
* Some hospitals have actually taken the stance that if you give the woman Informed Consent that they 'could' have spread of an existing but undiagnosed uterus cancer, then you can proceed with the surgery. Since when does Informed Consent allow a surgeon to knowingly kill a certain percentage of his/her patients? I am outraged at the unethical, immoral, and self-serving auspices of the American College of Ob/Gyn. I think all they care about is the money.
Since I transferred in to USC Keck School of Medicine in my third year of medical school, I had no choice but to fill my schedule with Basic Rotations. There was no time to take a month of Electives, like "cake" rotations that would let me sleep all night and come in at 9:00 am. None of that.
I repeated the hardest Core Rotations: Ob/Gyn, General Surgery, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, Cardiology, etc. So, as it turned out, I never had a chance to rotate as a medical student in Anesthesiology. But I did do a month of Anesthesiology Research, and I learned about the nerve stimulator, paralytic drugs, and residual neuromuscular blockade. I even presented two research papers at the Western Anesthesiology Resident's Conference (WARC) as a medical student. Unprecedented.
Dr. Nabil Rashad was my dearest mentor, and we wrote Anesthesiology Board Questions together, putting them into books. That was very helpful when it was time for me to take my own Anesthesiology Written Board Exam. I remember stepping out of the Exam and walk/running to my car to sit in the sun and eat my lunch alone. I felt like such a failure. I thought for certain that I had failed the Exam. All the hours I spent studying, and all the years I studied. All the 'No thank you's' to date inquiries, all the Friday and Saturday nights I spent in my apartment library, cramming information into my head. All the phone numbers of the guys who had asked me out; they were displayed in a bottle that I kept on top of the bookcase, to remind me that people come and go, but my education will stay with me forever. It's the only thing in life that I can count on.
There were no sugar plums dancing in my head. Half-lives of this drug, excretion by the kidneys or the liver? On that drug, side effects, how to put an anesthesia machine together, how to take it apart, how to make it a closed circuit to conserve body heat, all the stages of awakening and which was the most dangerous to the patient, and the reverse: the stages of reanimation, and which was the most apt to cause the patient to vomit into her lungs and die of aspiration pneumonia. And what is the diagnosis if the patient complains of chest pain after given naloxone to reverse morphine overdose? And which is the most appropriate steroid to give a lung transplantation patient postoperatively? And how do you prevent your PACU (post-anesthesia care unit) from sounding like a Haunted House, filled with people moaning and groaning in pain, and throwing up, causing you to gag? And just how much blood loss are you going to let your patient have on the table before you open your mouth and tell the surgeon you think she needs a blood transfusion? And which drugs cross the placenta:blood barrier from mother to baby, and which ones don't? And what is the difference between CPAP and SIMV mechanical ventilation in the Intensive Care Unit? How much PEEP should you add to the ventilator settings, and why? Which antibiotic are you going to give in the ICU for MRSA? For VRE? What are the side effects?
I finished my sandwich, drank my Ensure (chocolate), and cleared my mind. I prayed to God. I just wanted to pass. I didn't care if I got the lowest score in the country. I just wanted the test to be behind me and over with, so I could move on to the Oral Exam Boards. Really nice. I got out of my car, slammed the door shut with more confidence than I possessed, and walked into the room to finish the Exam.
And I'll never forget the day I opened the letter from the American Board of Anesthesiology. I passed! And I'm not going to tell you my score, because it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter at all. I passed and I was on my way to Baltimore for my next stop at Oral Exams, where they make you feel stupider than stupid.
I could put this behind me for the rest of my life.
All I could do was sink to the ground and cry and thank God.
by Dr. Margaret Aranda
After much ado because FB would not let me entitle my page with the word 'vagina' in it anywhere (it said it was already taken), I selected the username 'itsnotavajaejae' and WaLa! We are Up and Running and the race is on!
What race? What exactly is the race? I'm so glad you asked, because there are a multitude of women's health issues having to do with wellness that most women are completely unaware of. And I am convinced that there is a great disparity between the average Caucasian male's level of health care, and the average level of health care for Women. Why do I know this?
Heart disease is the #1 killer for both men and women. But women are more likely to be sent away from an ER with TUMS and die of their heart attack. And over the past years, men have lived longer than previously. And women? We have lost years of life compared to previous years. For the first time, there is a disparity between longevity in men vs women, and pretty soon, if things continue the way they have been, you'll see plenty of elderly men mixed in with all those pretty old ladies playing shuffleboard on cruises. Who knows? You may even be asked to dance by a gentleman, instead of just dancing with your girlfriends (which is also quite fun indeed).
So I decided to do something about it. I wrote this book, Archives of the Vagina: A Journey through Time and it starts with a girl's first period. Most girls remember where they were (exactly) when they started their first period. For most, it was a little frightful, because most girls did not feel prepared, especially us Baby Boomers, who probably just got handed a Red Book and were told to read about it there.
So this book educates, enlightens, inspires, and encourages on many levels. From the HPV Vaccine in girls 8-11 years old, to stop cervical cancer (looks like a black cauliflower), to menstruation and the DivaCup to the LunaPads to Pads4Girls to keep a Third World Country girl in school during her period, to learning how to insert a tampon, it's all there.
When your daughter is old enough, you can just give her the rest of the book, and she can have a good read on How to Insert a Penis. And I make sure she knows that if she has rectal sex first, and then puts the penis in her mouth, she just ate stool. E. Coli. To be exact.
If you are a woman in the USA and over 45 years old, you have a 40% chance that you've already had a hysterectomy (uterus removal). Of these women, half have had normal ovaries removed. So maybe that's why women are dying of heart disease ~ because the ovaries are no longer producing estrogen that prevents fibrin from sticking to the walls of the arteries. And even if you leave the ovaries in, you have still changed the blood supply to them by removing the uterus, and now they can't 'talk' to one another any more. Are you going bald? Did anyone prepare you for this? Surgical menopause occurs overnight, when otherwise ovaries that are left alone can continue to secrete hormones for 10 years after menopause. Is taking out the ovaries castration of the female? Yes. Do you think we'd ever get to a place where 40% of American men over 45 years old were walking around with no testicles? I think there would be marches down New York City and Washington, DC for that mass of male castration. Studies done by both the American College of Ob/Gyn and American Medical Association have shown that a 2nd Opinion before a hysterectomy can show that 50% or 90% of hysterectomies were unnecessary, respectively. This information was the worst information that I learned by writing this book, and things have to change. Getting a hysterectomy is not a status symbol. It's nothing to be proud of. Women need to be aware of this procedure, get informed consent, and be prepared for life afterwards.
And if you are a man over 65 years old and you still don't know where the 3 holes in the female genitalia are, buy this book for yourself and save your partner from getting urinary tract infections. And you can recommend it to your friends, too, because they need to know how to live with their wives who are going through menopause. In fact, they themselves could be going through MANopause, or andropause, and I give you several male perspectives throughout.
492 pages of entertainment, story-telling, research data, research analysis, scientific data, National Institutes of Health references, the state of menstruation today, the mistakes made with hormone replacement therapy in the past, and several keys to long life: enter the low-glycemic diet, immunonutrition, and telomeres.
And who do I think I am, what are my credentials, and what makes me such an authority?
#1) I'm a female;
#2) I've had babies and delivered them;
#3) I'm a Stanford-trained anesthesiologist and intensivist;
#4) I'm also Board Certified in Forensic Medicine;
#5) I hold Certification in Age Management Medicine;
#6) I'm disabled, post-menopausal, hypothyroid, and status-post trauma.
#7) I've been in bed for 7 years researching the best of the best so you don't have to, and that's with a traumatic brain injury and DI (x2); a vertebral artery dissection and aneurysm; and dysautonomia.
#8) A family member died of Alzheimer's disease, so that makes me eligible to speak up on this;
#9) I'm a professional physician and patient, who lives in a body that knows when it is sick.
#10) I'm a giver. My joy is in giving, and I give you the most powerful and precise messages that I can, and I sprinkle heavy on the joy, inspiration, motivation, and the need for us to have togetherness.
Because I believe that together, we can change the world.
But we can't do it silently, and we can't do it alone.
So start a trend. Back me up. Back up other women with Invisible Illnesses who are writing books, inventing products, and creating the wave of the female's future.
Welcome to the Health Care Social Media Review! This is one of those “blog carnivals” that’s hosted twice a month at different relevant sites, in this case highlighting “the best and the brightest health care social media writers, thinkers, users and proponents worldwide, to contribute to better understanding and adoption of social media in health care.”
Now don't get me wrong. I love to write, advocate, inspire, and touch the hearts and souls of people so that they feel chills all over their bodies. And I didn't get accepted to Stanford for nothing. But two brain injuries later, I know my IQ isn't the 190 it used to be. Maybe it dropped to 140. Haha. Just kidding. I never considered myself to be one of "the best and the brightest health care social media thinkers, users, and proponents..." But I just could not resist it.
I looked at my blogs, perhaps 50, and thought to myself, "Which one should I submit?" And I knew the answer before the question was finished. This blog was written when my symptoms were subsiding, when I was getting better after 6 years in bed, over 3 years on an iv, and over 50 hospitalizations and ER visits. I met and had over 6,000 You Tube and Facebook 'Caring Friends', I called them, because they prayed for me, they listened to me, and they were there for me when no one else was. My goal was to cheer them up, to uplift and inspire, to make them laugh, or to back them up in their goals. I never had any other intention. I was better and I didn't want them to think that I was 'leaving' them. Or that I wasn't 'one of them' any more. I didn't want to lose them.
So I submitted the blog, "Invisible no More" to the Contest, and only a few days later, I received a Congratulations and a link where my work was displayed after a You Tube video of a girl who was disabled. Other stories followed mine, and I was in 2nd place. It was all I could do to not be girlie and cry out of sheer disbelief.
So Happy pre-Valentine's Day to all, as the love spreads to you wherever you may be ~ !