The highest risk factor for hysterectomy is not the presence of disease. Women with intact female organs who have “routine” medical exams and public or private medical insurance are most at risk for hysterectomy.
Hysterectomy: Putting On
When hysterectomy is recommended, most women respond by telling the doctor that removing their uterus is too drastic for the reason given for the operation. A small number of women think it would be freeing to not have menstrual cramps, bleeding, and PMS, but most women want to put on the brakes and slow down the rush toward surgery. Nonetheless, one out of every three women undergo hysterectomy by the age of 60, without the information required for informed consent.
The reason so many women are hysterectomized without informed consent is remarkably simple…as is the solution.
Many of the functions of the female organs – such as cardiovascular protection, pelvic support, and uterine orgasm to name a few – are not visible. On the other hand, because the male organs are visible, as are many of their functions, men would never consider the amputation of their male organs to be freeing. The solution to preventing unnecessary hysterectomy, then, is providing women with information about female anatomy and the functions of the female organs.
THE H WORD, the book co-authored by Nora W. Coffey and Rick Schweikert, tells the story of how and why the HERS video “Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs” was produced, and why it is at the heart of a legislative solution to end unwarranted hysterectomy and female castration. The video, vetted by gynecologists and an anatomy professor, includes the anatomical facts every woman requires to be fully informed. 98% of the women HERS has referred to board certified gynecologists after being told they needed hysterectomies discovered that, in fact, they did not need the surgery. With this video, women come to understand the information needed to put the brakes on the doctor’s rush toward surgery, or to understand why they feel the way they do after the surgery.
The “Female Anatomy“ video is an essential, low-cost, highly successful educational model that provides the information women need to make an informed decision about hysterectomy and castration. It is available for free on the HERS website and has been viewed by more than a million women and men.
It also represents the turning point in THE H WORD, where education meets political action. And as Lee Rothberg said in her review, “THE H WORD is the beginning of the end…the silence is over!”