Smith's book is just one of several recent titles that question America's healthcare practices (see Walt Bogdonich's The Great White Lie , LJ 11/15/91, and Nancy Wainer Cohen's Open Season , LJ 11/1/91). Like Cohen, Smith questions the appropriateness of males as gynecologists, claiming that a male cannot empathize with, or even fully understand, a female patient's problems. He says a male gynecologist is too quick to operate, suggesting that a female physician would make different, and perhaps better, decisions. He also questions a male doctor's reasons for choosing the field of gynecology. Interestingly, Smith himself is both male and a gynecologist. He draws heavily on his own experience for shocking anecdotes, but he weakens his arguments by his failure to document appropriately when he uses outside sources. However, he does offer a helpful section covering the most common gynecological problems and outlining treatment options. He also discusses questions a patient should ask her doctor. An interesting book, but not a necessary purchase.-- KellyJo Houtz Parish, Univ. of Missouri-Kansas City Sch. of Medicine Lib.
Dr. Smith offers informed and reasonably spelled out opinions and illustrative anecdotes and case histories. Shame on the publisher for failing to provide an index and for saddling the book with a grandiose subtitle: A Physician's Explosive Account of Women's Medical Treatment, and Mistreatment, in America Today and What You Can Do About It. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)