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Post-menopausal and Sexuality Issues in the Maturing and Older Adult Essay

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Table of Contents
Introduction
GSM and Body Systems
Recommendation for Treatment
Level of Comfort in Taking a Complete Sexual History
Summary
References

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Introduction

In the first video, Doctor Cheryl Kingsburg discussed the importance of revealing sexual problems among the patients. This task seems to be complicated, but it is much easier than clinicians might think. Patients’ reaction to the decreased sexual desire screener is reported to be positive, making the diagnostics comfortable (MenopauseSociety, 2017). However, the principal issue is not in the process, but the perception of sexual dysfunction. The most surprising fact for me was the neglect of sexual problems by clinicians as they do not consider them as critical. These conditions are not life-threatening, but it does not mean they should not be monitored.

The second video is focused on the genitourinary syndrome of menopause, which is a term unfamiliar to most female patients. It combines all the concerning symptoms connected to menopause and the treatment methods allowing to deal with them (MenopauseSociety, 2016). The clinician’s most surprising statement was about its suitability to women with prior history of breast cancer that finished the treatment. It turned out to be safe for them in the case of coordination with oncologists.

GSM and Body Systems

GSM or genitourinary syndrome of menopause is a relatively new term, which describes the changes in a woman’s body related to menopause. Such changes happen to the vulva, vagina, and urinary tract and can be bothersome for patients (MenopauseSociety, 2016). The conditions connected to GSM should be monitored by a doctor as they require special treatment. Their importance is defined by the influence on women’s quality of life due to the emergence of pain and vagina dryness, causing discomfort and preventing sexual activity and, therefore, leading to emotional stress (MenopauseSociety, 2016). Thus, the symptoms meeting the definition of the genitourinary syndrome of menopause should be taken into account by female patients and doctors.

Recommendation for Treatment

GSM is a condition requiring treatment, and various methods are created to help women deal with it safely. According to Dr. Shapiro, the first measure after diagnosing GSM is the use of moisturizers and lubricants as they are useful for most cases (MenopauseSociety, 2016). However, the patients who decide to seek medical attention are likely to have tried them and remained unsatisfied with the outcome. In this case, they are recommended to use pelvic floor physical therapy as a non-hormonal option (MenopauseSociety, 2016). Other possibilities are vaginal conjugated estrogen or estradiol creams that are frequently prescribed by nursing practitioners after vaginal exams (Pace et al., 2020). Hence, there is a variety of methods allowing to ease the conditions of menopausal women.

Level of Comfort in Taking a Complete Sexual History

A medical specialist’s level of comfort in taking a complete sexual history is a vital characteristic defining the outcome of the treatment. As for me, I would say that it is average, which means that I should use the recommendations of other specialists to ensure the doctor-patient satisfaction. However, I think that my level of comfort does not depend on a patient’s gender. The only area I need to improve is the use of techniques allowing to receive this kind of information.

Summary

The consideration of this week’s discussion topic would be beneficial for me as a healthcare specialist as it contributes to the understanding of why some diagnoses remain unexamined. The perception of menopausal conditions is complicated due to the intimacy of the theme, and receiving a patient’s sexual history is one of the most vital tasks for a clinician. I find the topic useful for developing a pattern of behavior, allowing patients to feel comfortable while sharing such sensitive information as it is crucial for their treatment.

References

MenopauseSociety. (2016). Dr. Shifren discusses GSM [Video]. YouTube.

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MenopauseSociety. (2017). Tips for taking a sexual history [Video]. YouTube.

Pace, D. T., Chism, L. A., Graham, S., & Amadio, J. (2020). How nurse practitioners approach treatment of genitourinary syndrome of menopause. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 16(2), 136-142.

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