Faces of POF
Through thirty-nine stories and poems, Faces of POF gives voice to women with POF and their families.
For those with premature ovarian failure and for those who would help them, Faces of POF shows you the power and strength that other women with POF and their families have used to move through the physical and emotional process.
"A wonderfully thoughtful book full of new insights into the emotional lives of families touched by premature ovarian failure." Anne Borkowski, MD, Reproductive Endocrinologist
Thank you for purchasing Faces of POF. Proceeds of the book help to support educational programs of the organization. Please tell family, friends, health care professionals, bookstores and libraries about Faces of POF.
This is a book about hope. It is a book about survival. You will not find helpless victims inside these pages. You will become acquainted with a series of strong women, the men who love them, and their families. You will learn how individuals cope successfully with the adversity of this very challenging condition.
Premature ovarian failure is, by all accounts, a devastating diagnosis. Peculiar symptoms often last for years before a correct diagnosis is made. Women with this disorder may not attribute their symptoms to menopause—why would they? Their health care providers also tend to misattribute symptomatology. Diagnostic testing is delayed, sometimes resulting in irreversible loss of bone density and premature osteoporosis. And the often irreversible and unexpected infertility that accompanies POF is frequently the most distressing blow.
How do women adapt to this unwelcome diagnosis? In my years of experience in providing medical care to women with POF, there are some common themes that emerge. One of the most powerful affirmations for women with this diagnosis is the knowledge that they are not alone and that they can help one another. The Internet has become a true information highway for women with POF. By uniting those with a relatively rare disorder, sharing of emotions as well as medical knowledge can provide much support. POFers can help each other find the doctors who will work with them, the hormones (or alternatives) that will keep their symptoms at bay and their bodies healthy, and the wherewithal to wait it out until some of the answers they need come to them.
In this way, POF victims can make the transition into POF survivors. In this book, you will find suggestions and hope that will help guide you or a loved one through this difficult diagnosis. There is no one answer for the infertility that so often accompanies POF: from adoption, to child-free living, to egg donation; the reader can try on each solution and see how it fits. Learning how to live with uncertainty is one of the central life lessons that POF forces women to acknowledge. Adaptation is an ongoing process that entails great personal growth, and this book will help to show you how to begin.
- Nanette Santoro, MD