Discussion 3: Reproductive health

Discussion 3: Reproductive health

Discussion 3: Reproductive health

Equilibrium and change occurs in living as well as non-living systems. When cats become too warm, they pant to immediately release heat and to cool down their core. Changes also occur on a longer time scale in living beings. One such change is to the hormonal balance that ebbs and flows in most creatures, a balance that regulates appearance, reproduction, temperature, and mood. In humans, these changes are most obvious during the onset of adult hormonal changes, also called puberty, and the onset of post-reproductive life, known as menopause in women and andropause in men. Though a natural part of the aging process, it is one that impacts individuals differently. As described in your textbook reading this week, aging may be a combined effect of the body’s planned obsolescence, where our bodies progress through a natural sequence of changes and accumulated accidental injuries, where the challenges of life lead to irreversible damage.

Menopause is a natural part of the aging process and is due to changes in levels of a woman’s reproductive hormones. These changes require re-equilibration, which often results in the symptoms that women may experience when they are in their 40s, 50s, and 60s. Though most frequently discussed with females, it is not limited to women only. Hormonal changes and therefore re-equilibration occur in males as part of the aging process as well. Begin your background research on these topics here:

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health, Menopause:


The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health, Men’s Health:


The U.S. National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health Medline Plus:


Within the resources for Chapter 4 click on “Science in the News” and watch the Video “Slowing the Aging Process.”

During Seminar, be prepared to discuss the following scenario and the questions that follow:

A friend of yours has complained of the following symptoms:

weight gain
difficulty sleeping
low sex drive
lack of energy
depression/mood changes
Could these symptoms be due to menopause or andropause?
What questions would you ask in order to confirm that menopause or andropause is the likely cause? Think of it as an investigation, where you are applying the scientific method.
Hormone therapies are an option for treating these symptoms. Describe a person most appropriate for this type of treatment.
What are some of the risks associated with this treatment? How do they compare with other forms of hormone therapy, like the use of human growth hormone? Visit the National Institute on Aging to learn more:http://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/can-we-prevent-aging.
Are there alternatives to hormone therapies? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these alternatives?
How would the following conditions impact any advice you would give your friend:
Your friend smokes cigarettes
Your friend is male
Your friend is between the ages of 25 and 35
Your friend had a hysterectomy
work to be done : Write and submit a short paper. In a 400-word paper, discuss the questions posed in the Seminar description above.


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