Evenhanded Look at a Devastating Ailment

SEX, LIES & THE TRUTH ABOUT UTERINE FIBROIDS: A Journey From Diagnosis to Treatment to Renewed Good Health

By Carla Dionne

Avery

316 pages

$14.95 paperback

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Carla Dionne wasn't just borrowing a catchy phrase when she titled her book "Sex, Lies & the Truth About Uterine Fibroids." There is good reason for the title, as she explains and documents.

Dionne is the executive director of the Camarillo-based National Uterine Fibroids Foundation. But more important, she is a woman who dealt with a serious case of uterine fibroids and learned a great deal in the process. Among her discoveries is that doctors sometimes lie--perhaps not in a deliberate way but by not giving women the range of options and information on how to treat fibroids. Dionne shows how misinformation and inferior treatments can destroy not only a woman's sex life, but almost every aspect of her existence.

Uterine fibroids are a common problem; 25% of women will have them. Fibroids can cause severe pain, heavy bleeding and abdominal swelling, among other symptoms. And while there is too little medical knowledge on how to prevent or best treat them, fibroids are a very big business, accounting for some 200,000 hysterectomies in the United States each year and many thousands of less invasive procedures.

Dionne is a consumer activist to love. She doesn't try to push her own biases on readers about what treatments are good or bad. She doesn't rule out hysterectomy as a reasonable alternative. She does provide an in-depth primer on what uterine fibroids are and how women can go about seeking the best possible therapies. In her chapters on treatments, she catalogs an amazing alphabet soup of options.

She concludes the book with information on how to choose a doctor, how to check out the doctor with a medical board and how to use the Internet to look up medical information.

Doctors who treat fibroids beware: Women who come in armed with this book may have you on the ropes.

Going Beyond Cabinet Locks

NOT UNDER MY ROOF!

Protecting Your Baby

From Toxins at Home

A video from the Children's Health Environment Coalition.

Produced by Carrie Cook Platt.

17 minutes

$9.95 plus $3.95 in shipping and handling.

Order at (800) 452-4789.

"Not Under My Roof!" elevates the concept of childproofing. It educates parents and caregivers about unseen dangers that can be as hazardous to babies and young children as scalding bathwater or frayed electrical cords.

The Children's Health Environment Coalition is a nonprofit organization founded in 1992 by Los Angeles residents Jim and Nancy Chuda after their 5-year-old daughter, Colette, died of cancer. The video, narrated by Olivia Newton-John and Kelly Preston, gently informs parents of where pesticides, lead and other chemicals might reside and be ingested by their children, thereby increasing the risk of asthma, learning disabilities, even cancer. Although many parents do their best to make their homes safe for their children, few may think about the hazards of renovating, painting or applying pesticides during the years when babies are young and rapidly developing. This video urges caution.

The program covers a lot in a short amount of time, and viewers might end up with more questions than answers. The coalition's Web site is a good place to go for more information (www.checnet.org). At the end of the tape, Newton-John sings a moving rendition of "Over the Rainbow," an emotional pitch to remind us that our children deserve our very best effort.

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