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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Catherine S. Stika, MD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This book is an in-depth review of the normal and abnormal menstrual cycle as well as the evaluation and treatment of menstrual dysfunction.
Purpose: The purpose is to discuss the events of the menstrual cycle and its associated cellular and physiological changes and the hormonal dynamics at each organ level. It includes reviews of menarche, menopause, and the fertile cycle as well as menstrual dysfunction. Also discussed are steroid contraception, assisted reproduction, and premenstrual syndrome.
Audience: No audience is specifically identified by the authors, although in my judgment, it appears to be targeted to advanced residents, general gynecologists interested in endocrinology, and fellows in reproductive-endocrinology.
Features: The illustrations are entirely in black-and-white and are of average quality. The majority of the illustrations are referenced and not original to the text. The legends are frequently confusing and contain descriptions that rather than provide a clear explantation of events in the illustration would be more appropriately placed within the body of the text. Deciphering the illustrations is often tedious. The references are organized by topic but are dated; there is only a rare reference from 1990 and 1991. This book is occasionally poorly organized. The discussion under the general heading of "The Initial Clinical Evaluation of the Abnormal Cycle" evolves into an overview of an entire infertility workupincluding laparoscopy and hysterosalpingography. In the chapter "Diagnosis of Menstrual Cycle Dysfunction" flow charts are presented but the specific tests are never discussed in the text. The authors recommend approaching the evaluation of amenorrhea as either primary orsecondary. The di scussion of end-organ failure follows that scheme but not that for hypothalamic-pituitary dysfunction.
Assessment: Although the discussions are usually in-depth and thorough, the organization of this book and its illustrations are confusing and significantly detract from its usefulness as an aid to either clinical practice or academic understanding.