Project Description

Mary Lake Polan

Mary Lake Polan, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., served as the chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Stanford University School of Medicine from 1990 to 2006 and is currently a Clinical Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine at Yale University School of Medicine. She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine. Dr. Polan has a long-standing interest in women’s health research and has been actively involved in international public health. While at Stanford Medical School, she initiated The Eritrean Women’s Project in 2001 and has maintained this surgical project in Eritrea to repair fistulas resulting from traumatic births.

A Doctor’s Journey: What I learned about women, healing, and myself in Eritrea

Dr. Mary Lake Polan takes us on a compelling journey into Eritrea, where she started a surgical clinic to offer life-changing care to African women. She and her team repair fistulas, a condition that results from traumatic births and leads many African women to lives of stigma and shame. Dr. Polan describes how she and her surgical team offered the care and compassion that forever changed the lives of their African patients, in a story that will inspire readers to believe that they, too, can make a difference.

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