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A new diagnosis for Frida Kahlo's infertility
Date:4/22/2012

is unclear how many women are affected by Asherman's syndrome, as it is often misdiagnosed, but it is estimated that the risk of developing the syndrome from the dilation and curettage procedure ranges between 8 percent to 30 percent. The risk increases with repeated curettage procedures. Antelo points out that, in rare cases, women may develop Asherman's syndrome without ever having been pregnant. Such cases are known as nongravid Asherman's syndrome. Those women are often diagnosed after uterine surgery or failed implantation of an intrauterine device, Antelo explained.

A proper diagnosis relies on imaging, and hysteroscopy, which allows for visual inspection of the uterine cavity and tissue, is most often used. Treatment protocols include removal of adhesions in the cavity and prevention of further scarring with hormones that promote healthy tissue growth. Sometimes, if the condition is diagnosed early and scarring is limited, fertility can be restored.

The researcher

"Kahlo shares with us her painful memories of miscarriage and loss," says Antelo. "As you study and recognize the anatomic detail in her paintings, you begin to realize that Kahlo has been talking to doctors and studying medical books." The fact that Kahlo chose to pursue a course of premedical studies during high school was not overlooked by Antelo, who believes that Kahlo was using her paintings not only as a form of cathartic therapy but also as a means to demonstrate the extent of her medical knowledge specific to human reproduction.

Antelo said he was moved to work on this project because of Kahlo's unique use of medical imagery in the 1944 painting "Broken Column," which illustrates many clues that physicians, including Antelo, have been trained to identify in patients experiencing physical and mental pain.

"Moreover, my own experience with a car accident and back pain gave me another level on which to connect with Kahlo who was sh
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Contact: Angela Hopp
media@faseb.org
619-525-6213
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Source:Eurekalert

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