She MUST Use Instead for Her Health!

A reader from New York City comments about how the Instead menstrual cup is the only thing she can use:

Instead is currently the ONLY menstrual protection that I can use. I underwent recurrent urinary tract infections for a year triggered by pad use (those nasty perforated plastic liners that always feel wet to the touch are great breeding grounds for bacteria, especially "Always"). A latex allergy means that the "Keeper" is out of the question. Tampons are undescribably painful to use. Instead is messy (it helps to have a non-latex glove on the withdrawing hand and then invert it over the whole thing) but it is extremely comfortable and toxic-shock free. The benefits outweigh the problems. I wouldn't use anything else.
Using Instead is very much like using a diaphragm, which is equally messy but much used.

See the comment about Instead last week and the able of contents at the top of the page for more items about Instead (listed under "cup, menstrual").

Read About the Latest in Endometriosis

Donna Laux of the Endometriosis Care Center e-mails that you folks - and me, too - might want to read about a topic that afflicts millions of women of menstruating age.

The Web site is

Thanks, Donna!

Menstruation Benefits Men!?

I mentioned earlier the interesting article about why women menstruate (in Science News by John Travis). Susan Dean of San Jose, California, (one of five SN published in its 17 May edition) wrote a letter to SN in response to that article, saying, in part,

What man would want to mate with a woman who did not menstruate? Lack of menstruation indicates either that she is pregnant by a rival or that she is not healthy enough to bear children.

Why monthly? Anything as predictable as the moon provides a reliable measure for controlling a woman's behavior.

In England, the banns must be read for three weeks in the church before a wedding can take place. Surely in this amount of time the bride would demonstrate that she is not pregnant before the church sanctions the union. Perhaps I am extending my precepts too far here, but as your article mentions, the religious taboos surrounding this subject are extensive.

Dioxin Affects Fish, and You and Me

Again and again we read about the effects of the class of chemicals called dioxins, found almost everywhere, and produced in part from the processing of wood - this means it's found in many menstrual products, since many pads and tampons contain wood pulp.

Read about the effects on fish, and probably the people that eat them, in the 17 May edition of Science News.

"Traumatic Grief" is Dangerous

People whose spouses were a "Band-Aid" - they helped them with their very inadequate skills in relationships - suffer a kind of post-traumatic stress disorder when these partners die. Damage to their immune systems can be worse than that experienced by severely depressed people, and can probably trigger grave physical illness, such as cancer. Psychotherapy can help.

Read about it in the May American Journal of Psychiatry.

Finding Lobular Breast Cancer, NOT with Mammography

In contrast to the cancer 85% of women afflicted with breast cancer get, a cancer which affects the ducts which carry milk to the nipple, lobular breast cancer, which affects the milk-producing glands themselves, cannot be detected by mammography.

Carol Shattuck, now undergoing chemotherapy for this latter cancer, writes in the Washington Post Health section (20 May), "No matter what your age, mammography is not always the answer. At least 10 percent of breast cancers are not picked up on mammograms . . . . We must . . . become knowledgeable about about cancer and the limits of technology, such as mammography . . . . [M]any of our doctors, along with the general public, place far too much reliance on mammography."

This Post section also talks about clotting problems with birth control pills.

Does Estrogen Reduce the Risk of Alzheimer's Disease?

In a fabulous article on the pioneer of geriatric research, Dr. Caleb E. Finch, of the University of Southern California, Science Times (New York Times) from 20 May reports that "women who take estrogen replacement therapy after menopause appear to have a reduced risk of developing the disease [Alzheimer's], and early studies have suggested that the hormone can ameliorate the symptoms and slow the progress of mental decline in those already afflicted."

NEXT EARLIER NEWS | First Page | Newest News | FAQs | Directory | Index to News
© 1998 Harry Finley. It is illegal to reproduce or distribute any of the work on this Web site in any manner or medium without written permission of the author. Please report suspected violations to