Exciting News For Women’s Health Unveiled at Conference
The American Academy of Fertility Care Professionals held its 22nd conference, the first ever to be held in Canada on July 16-19 at Toronto’s Delta Chelsea Hotel… By Lorraine Williams
The American Academy of Fertility Care Professionals held its 22nd conference, the first ever to be held in Canada on July 16-19 at Toronto’s Delta Chelsea Hotel. Over 200 delegates, including medical consultants, NaProtechnology practitioners and other allied professionals listened as Dr. Thomas Hilgers, founding director of the Pope Paul VI Institute in Omaha Nebraska presented the dramatic findings of his research. This international conference was hosted by the Marguerite Bourgeoys Family Centre, the largest agency in Canada providing NaProtechnology practitioners to couples for fertility care.
Hilgers’ presentation was but one facet of a rich program dealing with women’s reproductive health. At the opening session Hon. Noel Kinsella, Senate deputy leader and the Archdiocese of Toronto through Dr. Suzanne Scorsone brought greetings. The keynote speaker was Father John Yake, SCJ speaking on “The Spirituality of Fertility Care”. Father Yake’s talk was given a standing ovation. Attendees obviously endorsed his key concepts – that sexuality and love were fully realized only in the true conversation or “coming together” between persons in what Buber termed the “I-Thou” coming together, as opposed to the “I-It” contact. Quoting key concepts by philosophers and theologians as diverse as Bernard Lonergan, Sebastian Moore, Cardinal Ratzinger and our present Pope, Yake presented an eloquent exposition of how we can truly help one another to come closer to full personhood (an ideal only fully achieved in union with God). The luncheon speaker, Dr. Donald DeMarco, re-emphasized this theme in an informal address.
The energy unleashed by Yake’s talk permeated the rest of the conference. Hilgers’ paper on the successful treatment of endometriosis (often undiagnosed because of failure to utilize “near-contact” laparoscopy) through surgical NaProtechnology, demonstrated it eliminated the risk of scar tissue or adhesions 90% of the time, thus achieving a more positive fertility potential for the patient. Compounding pharmacist Janina Filipczuk, founder of Toronto’s Women’s Wellness Partnership, presented a paper on Dispelling the Myth of Sex Hormones dealing with concerns over Hormone Replacement Therapy. She outlined the etiology and production of estrogen and progesterone, their role in female menopause and male andropause. Her emphasis on the use of natural – as opposed to synthetic – hormones, and proper timing for use of these was backed up by detailed analysis of hormonal changes in women’s cycles.
Generalized findings from three research papers in the process of peer review in medical journals were outlined by Drs. Tracey Parnell, Medical Director of the Hannah Centre for Women’s Health Research and Restorative Reproductive Medicine in Cranbrook BC and Phil Boyle, Galway Ireland. These dealt with improved maternal and fetal outcomes of live births in women over the age of 37 who conceive using NaProtechnology, and successful fertility treatment (105 pregnancies for 83 couples, with 72 resulting in successful deliveries) with NaPro for couples who have experienced failure with repeated InVitro Fertilization attempts.
Doctor Boyle emphasized the importance of being faithful to the protocol. The record of success here using a method that is in accord with church teachings provides a moral alternative to many couples desperate for a child. As Boyle pointed out, “Couples can co-create an immortal soul in co-operation with God”.
The session by Hilgers dealing with ovarian cysts, osteoporosis, thyroid dysfunction and finally breast cancer brought new hope to women who are or are potentially candidates for such conditions. In particular, Hilgers’ work in examining patient charts of women who later developed breast cancer, sent in by 14 practitioners internationally plus some of his own patients, revealed that eighty-five percent of the women who later incurred breast cancer showed dramatic abnormal hormonal variation in their post-peak phase, when they were still cancer free. Such findings lead to early identification of women liable to contract breast cancer later in life, a most helpful indicator necessitating closer monitoring via self-breast exam and mammograms. At the business sessions of the American Academy, outstanding Fertility Care professionals were recognized, as was the work of Marguerite Bourgeoys Family Centre in organizing the successful event. At the Saturday liturgy at St. Michael’s Cathedral, Cardinal Ambrozic spoke warmly of the work of the fertility care practitioners.
The underlying philosophy of this year’s conference could be found in a quote from Albert Einstein used by Dr. Boyle: “There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle”. Fertility care practitioners do help miracles happen!
(For further info on the papers presented, contact 416-465-2868)