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February 04 , 2008

Damaged Goods?

Women Living With Incurable Sexually Transmitted Diseases


How do women living with genital herpes and/or HPV (human papilloma virus) infections see themselves as sexual beings, and what choices do they make about sexual health issues? Adina Nack, a medical sociologist who specializes in sexual health and social psychology, conducted in-depth interviews with 43 women about their identities and sexuality in regards to chronic illness. The result is a fascinating book about an issue that affects over 15 million Americans, but is all too little discussed.

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Damaged Goods adds to our knowledge of how women are affected by living with chronic STDs and reveals the stages of their sexual- self transformation. From the anxiety of being diagnosed with an STD to issues of blame and shame, Nack-herself diagnosed with a cervical HPV infection-shows why these women feeling that they are "damaged goods," question future relationships, marriage, and their ability to have healthy children.

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