Issues of Female Physiology and Reproductive Responses in the Neurorehabilitation Setting

  • Frances Marks
  • Mary Sano
Part of the Current Clinical Neurology book series (CCNEU)


The female reproductive cycle is controlled by the interaction of hormones on the hypothalamus, pituitary, and gynecologic end organs (ovary and uterus). There is influence from several neurologic pathways as well. Although the cortex has little known control of the reproductive system, sub-cortical areas do play a role. In addition, the visceral efferent system or autonomic nervous system (parasympathetic and sympathetic) as well as efferent and sensory nerves innervate the pelvic organs. These systems and hormones affect bone, breasts, reproductive organs, and sexual response. Acute and chronic neurologic illness as well as the medications used to treat these disorders may affect many systems. The relationship of the onset of illness to pregnancy may differentially affect fetal development and delivery. Antepartum, intrapartum, and postpartum management of the neurologic patient may require special attention. Neurologic illness may also have an impact on lactation. The impact of infertility resulting in a pregnancy and/or the diagnostic evaluation may exacerbate a patient’s disease process. Anesthesia or medical consults may be required during the infertility evaluation or during pregnancy. The neurologic patient may be on medications that affect ovulation, menses, pregnancy, or the fetus. Ovulation induction hormones may be needed for conception to occur. This chapter will discuss the impact of neurological disease and its pharmacologic treatment on all of these issues.


Multiple Sclerosis Menstrual Cycle Neural Tube Defect Sexual Response Neurologic Patient 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

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  • Frances Marks
  • Mary Sano

There are no affiliations available

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