I illustrated this post with links to posts I’ve written about women. Please note these usually include affiliate links, so if you do happen to use them for a purchase you will help me fund this blog.
This information is current as of the publication date; it is general medical information that helps doctors and patients make decisions about what is right for them. Medical recommendations and practice change as we learn new things. Discuss with your physician or appropriate healthcare provider.
Relieving the pain of endometriosis
Women with endometriosis can suffer infertility, heavy menstrual bleeding, painful periods, and pelvic pain unrelated to their periods. In endometriosis, uterine tissue grows outside the uterus; laparoscopy, an invasive procedure used to diagnose it. Treatment depends on the goal, whether pregnancy, pain relief, or both. Short of surgery, hormonal therapy has been the mainstay of treatment.
A new hormonal drug released in 2018, elagolix, brand name Orilissa, is the first of its kind specifically developed and approved to treat “moderate to severe” endometriosis pain, but not infertility. AbbVie, the pharmaceutical company which developed the drug,priced it at $844 per month, or about $10000 per year, retail. ( per Reuters report) Patients may pay less depending on insurance.
A Natural Woman- Carole King shares a lifetime of music, a season of pain
Carole King insists that she never wanted to be a star or diva, and she zealously guarded her privacy. According to this book, she values her family, relationships, writing songs, and sharing her music. I am glad she also decided to share this side of her life and the lessons it teaches.
After menopause many women develop atrophy of the vagina, making it thin, dry, and easily irritated, leading to painful sex, or dyspareunia. A new intravaginal medication, prasterone,brand name Intrarosa, can help relieve the discomfort. Studies show it may also help improve sexual desire and arousal, but it is not labeled for this.
Manufactured by AMAG Pharmaceuticals, it is for “moderate to severe” symptoms. Also known as DHEA, a steroid, it transforms into estrogen in the vagina; administered as a once daily vaginal insert at bedtime, applied with an applicator. According to goodrx.com, a 30 day supply costs about $213.
DHEA can be purchased as an over-the-counter, non-regulated product, whose effectiveness and safety are unknown. A one-month supply of 50 mg tablets may cost $5.
Other options for treating vaginal atrophy symptoms are oral or vaginal estrogen and/or vaginal lubricants.
Working Stiff -a book review to remember 9/11
When she applied for a position in New York City at the NYC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), Dr. Judy Melinek never imagined that decision would plunge her into the nightmare of September 11, 2001. She was at the ME office that day when the Twin Towers were attacked and fell, killing thousands…Keep reading
Prevention of migraine pain and disability
Migraine, although not exclusive to women,occurs more frequently in them than men. For infrequent headaches,doctors recommend non-prescription pain relievers since they are effective, safe, and have few side effects. For more severe and disabling headaches, prescription meds designed specifically for migraine are tried next, usually those in the triptan class of drugs.
But when headaches are severe, frequent, or persistent, patients should also consider preventive medication to improve quality of life. In addition to several effective oral meds there are two injectable drugs which work differently
The Food and Drug Administration has approved several new drugs in the past two years.
a new use for Botox
Yes the same drug used to treat wrinkles,Botox, can prevent migraine
Botox, onabotulinumtoxin A, treats chronic migraine, meaning patients with frequent headaches and other migraine symptoms for at least 3 months.
Manufactured by Allergan, a vial containing 200 units costs $1452, per goodrx.com. For migraine, the drug is injected in the upper facial muscles by a physician specifically trained in its use.
It’s in the genes
Another novel therapy uses the immune system to fight migraine.
Monoclonal antibodies bind to a calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor which transmits migraine pain. The antibodies are produced in a laboratory but work like antibodies naturally produced by the body. They are used to treat cancers and some forms of arthritis. They are called calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor antagonists.
These drugs are used to prevent migraine . (generic name-brand name)
Administered as subcutaneous injections (under the skin) monthly, according to Medscape, the average cost is $600 per month.
Two similar drugs, rimegepant (Nurtec ODT)and ubrogepant (Ubrelvy) treat migraine pain and are taken by mouth (orally).
You may want to review my previous post about non-drug ways to manage migraine.
Simple and effective ways to manage chronic pain
The Helpers-a book review
Starting from the pandemic’s quiet beginning late in 2019 through the vaccine distribution in early 2021, the author unfolds how the pandemic impacted their lives, their families, and communities. Despite being front line workers, they suffered the same things others did-isolation, loss of jobs and income, demanding work schedules under pressure; and for some, infection,…Keep reading
exploring the HEART of health through books
Thanks for joining me to review new steps in women’s health and review some fine women authors. I hope you will follow the links to my reviews and read some or all of these books. When you do, I would love to know your reaction. I might use your comments in an update.
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