Tuesday, March 18, 2008

On menstrual and basal body temperature charting

I was searching amazon.com and checking out reviews of fertility books for a future post and found a comment from a reviewer which i think are quite interesting

I have such mixed feelings about the book that I have difficulty writing a balanced review. On one hand, this book contains far more information about the menstrual cycle, ovulation, and BBT charting than any other source I've found. My OB/GYN suggested that I start charting after several months of trying to conceive, but his overview of how to chart and interpret those charts was so brief as to be almost useless. This detailed, thorough book helped fill in many of those gaps.
On the other hand, I was so upset with the tone of the book that I would hesitate to recommend it to anyone. The author assumes that all of her female readers are ignorant victims of the "male-dominated medical establishment," and criticizes women again and again for not knowing every minute detail of their menstrual cycle, which I found silly. After all, I don't know every detail of the inner workings of my digestive tract either--does that make me a victim too?
My more serious objection is the fear tactics that the author uses to scare women away from seeking out medical help with a fertilty problem. I approached my fertility problem this way: I want a baby, and whether it's conceived through medical means or "natural" means does not matter. I agree that charting and lifestyle modifications should be your first step on the road to treatment, but if those methods don't work (which they probably won't if you have a serious fertility problem), you shouldn't be afraid to move on to medical help. After reading this book, I came away thinking that every doctor is arrogant, close-minded, ignorant about basic biology, and out to prescribe unnecessary fertility treatments just to make money. The first OB/GYN I saw wasn't great, but when I switched to a wonderful infertility specialist, everything became easier right away. He suggested that I stop charting because timing wasn't our problem--my husband's low sperm counts were. Quitting charting was the single biggest stress-reliever of my infertilty experience--I no longer felt that it was all "up to me." I'm also happy to report that after two years of trying, I'm finally expecting a baby this summer. My overall recommendation of this book would be to heed the factual information, but ignore the biases of its author.
source : amazon.com

I cannot agree more with this comment. On one side knowledge is power and it is essential for all of us to live mindfully. At the same time we should also approach problems with pragmatism and with an unbiased mind. More to come on this topic

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