Foreword

All the characteristics and driving force of The Cleveland Clinic are to be found in this book on pelvic floor function. The Cleveland Clinic is a group practice founded in 1921 on the principles of cooperation, collaboration, and collegiality. Its founders believed that many physicians working together will discover better solutions to medical problems than physicians working in isolation. They believed that the combination of disciplines, with their inherent differences in philosophy and skills, will produce a better outcome than might have evolved singularly.

The power of the collaborative approach is on full display in this book. The pelvic floor unites three separate organ systems. Before this time, each has been approached individually. Urologists, gynecologists, and colorectal surgeons are each trained in their own disciplines, and the pelvic floor is subsumed in these larger fields of study. When they combine their focus on the pelvic floor, they bring their unique perspectives and different approaches to a common goal: the relief of pelvic floor syndromes such as incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.

The notion that three disciplines can combine for a better outcome than they would achieve singly, is a modern-day version of an old fable. The American poet John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887) adapted that fable in his poem, "The Blind Men and the Elephant." It tells the story of six blind wise men who encounter an elephant for the first time, and how they try to make sense of it by touch alone. The first blind man falls against the side of the elephant, and declares that the elephant is like a wall. The second man feels the tusk and concludes that anything so sharp is like a spear. The third man grabs the trunk and announces that the elephant is like a snake. The fourth man feels the knee and states that the elephant is like a tree. The fifth blind man touches the ear and decides that it is like a fan. The six man grabs the tail and decides it is a like a rope. Each wise man feels the elephant from his own small perspective and visualizes something different. As individuals, they think they have the answer. But if they had combined their impressions, they would have reached a far different conclusion.

The practice of joining with colleagues to visualize a problem from your own perspective and the group perspective, can lead to magnificent conclusions and interesting solutions. That is precisely what happens in this book. By combining the views of three different disciplines, which have furthered our knowledge of pelvic floor function, it offers a new and better approach to dysfunction. Medicine has advanced tremendously in the past half century, more specifically in the past two decades. The dominance of traditional specialties such as urology, gynecology, and general surgery has given way to an emphasis on subspecialties such as urogynecology, female urology, and colorectal surgery. This has allowed experts, such as the authors, to focus on a narrower field, and enjoy greater success than they might have if their concentration had been diluted by many broad interests. In this book, they are the personification of teamwork. Their characteristics of focus, innovation, collaboration, and dedication are the very qualities that will someday advance medicine far beyond anything we can imagine today.

By combining their expertise in this book, the authors have made a tremendous advance in the understanding of the pelvic floor and its dysfunction. They have raised medicine to yet a higher level, and performed a service that will benefit patients with pelvic floor dysfunction for years to come.

Robert Kay, MD Vice Chairman, Board of Governors Chief of Staff The Cleveland Clinic Foundation Cleveland OH, USA

Herbal Remedies For Acid Reflux

Herbal Remedies For Acid Reflux

Gastroesophageal reflux disease is the medical term for what we know as acid reflux. Acid reflux occurs when the stomach releases its liquid back into the esophagus, causing inflammation and damage to the esophageal lining. The regurgitated acid most often consists of a few compoundsbr acid, bile, and pepsin.

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