SUNY New Paltz Professor approaches hysterectomy from the patient's perspective
NEW PALTZ -- Women who are considering a hysterectomy now have access to a compassionate step-by-step overview of the process, the latest medical information, and valuable Web resources all in one book. Adelaide Haas, professor of communication and women's studies at the State University of New York at New Paltz, along with Susan L. Puretz, former professor and chair of the past Department of Health and Physical Education, have revised and updated their book, The Woman's Guide to Hysterectomy (Celestial Arts, 1995).
A hysterectomy, the removal of a woman's uterus, is the second most common procedure for women, next to cesarean section. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one in four women will have this procedure by age 60.
Haas and Puretz write from their firsthand experiences with hysterectomies, and years of extensive research. Determined to provide other women with more complete and accurate information, they decided to collaborate in writing the book. This newly revised and updated volume provides the same compassion, authority and easy-to-understand explanations found in the first edition, but with important updates. The book draws on the personal stories of 368 women to capture the full experience from the patient's view.
In the introduction, Haas says that after researching the medical literature, she recognized a significant void in the available material: the patient's point of view. "Woman want to know more than technical facts," said Haas. "We also wanted to know how other women felt and react before, during and after this surgery."
Haas and Puretz address common fears, expectations, and questions regarding risks and after-effects. They write about the benefits of a second diagnosis and diagnostic tests, as well as outpatient procedures and preparation for surgery. Life after hysterectomy is also covered, from postoperative care and recovery to sex and sexuality. The book also contains a thorough 17-page glossary of terminology.
"Their joint effort has produced one of the most comprehensive books on hysterectomy to date," said Joanne Sulewski, M.D., associate professor at SUNY Buffalo Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Endocrinology. "It has honest, personal insight for a sensitive concern, it's easy to read, has a scientific perspective, as well as a feminine viewpoint. It's an excellent book."
Haas has been a faculty member at SUNY New Paltz for more than 30 years. She has taught in the departments of women's studies, communication and communication disorders. She also co-wrote, with her husband, Kurt, a popular college text, Understanding Sexuality, which was first published in 1987. It is now in its third edition and has been translated into Chinese and published in Beijing. Haas has a bachelor's degree from Pennsylvania State University, a master's degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, and a doctorate in speech pathology from Columbia University.
Puretz taught at SUNY New Paltz for more than 26 years and was chair of the Department of Health and Physical Education from 1994 through 1997, when the department was eliminated. Puretz received the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1976. She has a bachelor's degree from Brooklyn College and a master's and Ph. D degree from New York University. After receiving her doctorate, she earned a second master's degree in psychology from SUNY New Paltz. Haas has published numerous articles on health education and human sexuality.
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