Making a Better Mousetrap
Finding what’s true has always been a driver of mine. Having an idea then deeply questioning it to see if it holds up is exciting, and the idea that I could add something new to the world gives me purpose. In medical school, I was involved in numerous research projects mainly because I had to. They weren’t mine, I didn’t choose them, and there wasn’t much to get passionate about.
My first original idea that got me really fired up was in residency, where we were required to complete an original research project. I had been horrified at the routine performance of newborn circumcision without any type of anesthesia, and as a resident often I was the surgeon. Watching these one-day-old baby boys vomit and turn blue trying to catch their breath while screaming in pain made me question what on earth we were doing. “This is just the way it’s done,” I was told, and “they won’t remember it.” Realizing that this experience must have long-lasting effects on the baby’s perception of this brand new world and that we wouldn’t do surgery on a pet without anesthesia, I set out to study a safe form of local anesthesia which proved to be highly successful. The study was published in 1998 and was largely responsible for the American Academy of Pediatrics’ current position of recommending anesthesia for all routine circumcisions, and hospitals all over the country changing their practices.
For many years in a private non-academic practice, my research became more personal, just seeing what worked for my patients and sharing that with others. As my experience grew I felt drawn again to share what I had learned with a wider audience. In 2016, I was part of a landmark study on body image and sexual satisfaction related to cosmetic gynecologic procedures, which reaffirmed what I had seen in my own practice, validating that these procedures really do help a subset of women to have improved body image and sexual satisfaction scores.
Recently in 2018, I completed my “Menopause, Sexuality and Relationships” study which involved an extensive survey completed by over 1000 women aged 40-65, followed by in-depth interviews of willing participants. The enormous amount of data that I collected provided the fuel I needed to write the book “Sexually Woke,” to normalize and share what we really experience in the midlife bedroom. While the book will not be published until late 2020, you can see exciting excerpts from it here!
Entering my 50’s and being surrounded by similarly aged women, I became fascinated with holistic wellness, learned everything I could to become an expert in hormone replacement and started experimenting with “anti-aging” products. Not surprisingly, many products were snake oil and preyed on our vulnerability as aging women who would buy just about anything that promised the fountain of youth. As a consumer, I found the endless array of products impossible to choose from, and the whole thing seemed way too complicated. So I set out to find the “best in class” organic, plant-based hormone creams and a simple, scientifically proven line of skincare products and supplements that actually work. This research has resulted in the AGIL Wellness line of transdermal hormones, skincare products, and supplements that I can truly stand behind and recommend for the busy woman who doesn’t have time to use 10 or more products a day. I use them myself, chosen them from hundreds of potential possibilities and narrowed down to the few things that really make a difference, making the harrowing task of trial and error much more simple. 50% of the profits from AGIL Wellness benefits the AGIL Foundation, which funds women’s health projects in rural Africa.