Gynecology: Durable, Unendurable Women

The polysyllabic title in the American College of Surgeons program was obviously designed to be provocative: "What Is Exciting in Gynecologic Endocrinology?" But his confreres suddenly sat up when Gynecologist Robert W. Kistner blurted: "We are keeping women around too long—they should all be dead soon after age 45."

Then Dr. Kistner backtracked to explain: "Women are the only mammalian females to live beyond their reproductive usefulness. So it is by that evolutionary standard that they live too long. But since we do keep them around, we should recognize that during the menopause they are living in a state...

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