About Philip M. Sarrel, M.D.
Philip M. Sarrel, M.D., is Emeritus Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences and Psychiatry at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. He has been a member of the Yale Ob/Gyn faculty since 1963.
A board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist, Professor Sarrel has also been a member of the Psychiatry Department since 1969. In 1975, he started Yale's Menopause Program and remained Program Director until 2002. During that time he directed or was involved in both clinical and basic science research, studying the effects of ovarian hormones on arterial function. In 1982, he devoted a sabbatical year to menopause studies with Professor Malcolm Whitehead at the King's College in London.
From 1989-1990, as a visiting professor at the National Heart and Lung Institute in London, another sabbatical year was devoted to arterial studies of ovarian hormone actions. During that time, and subsequently, more than 100 papers and abstracts were published by Professor Sarrel and his cardiology collaborators exploring cellular and physiological effects of estradiol-17B as well as clinical effects in women with angina and established heart disease.
In 2013 Sarrel et al published "Mortality Toll of Estrogen Avoidance" in the American Journal of Public Health. In 2014 and 2015 his publications focused on the impact of untreated menopause symptoms on women in the workforce.
Professor Sarrel has had a parallel career in Psychiatry in which his focus has been sexual development in adolescence and the treatment of sexual dysfunction. Together with Lorna Sarrel, he directed the Yale Sex Counseling Service from 1969 until his retirement in 2009. He is the author or co-author of six books and more than 200 articles published in refereed medical journals.
He is currently a Fellow of the Koerner Center for Emeritus Professors at Yale.
In 2014, Professor Sarrel founded the Advancing Health After Hysterectomy Foundation.
About Lorna Sarrel, MSSW
Lorna Sarrel retired after 35 years as Instructor and Assistant Clinical Professor of Social Work in Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine. With Philip Sarrel, she founded and ran Yale University’s Sex Counseling Service. She taught a course about sex, Topics in Human Sexuality, for Yale students for 25 years.
In 1971, with Philip Sarrel, she received training in sex therapy at the Reproductive Biology Research Institute headed by Dr. William Masters and Virginia Johnson. In 1975-76 she was an Associate in Research in the Department of Psychiatry, Oxford University, England. Between 1978 and 1981, Lorna Sarrel was Co-Principal Investigator for a National Institute of Mental Health training grant to train community therapists in the essentials of sex therapy.
Lorna Sarrel is the co-author of two books and co-editor of two others all having to do with human sexuality and development. Psychosexual aspects of menopause have been the focus of other articles. She was a Contributing Editor, with her husband, to Redbook Magazine, originating and writing the monthly column “Sex and Health.”
Between 1975 and 1985 she served as a board member and chairman of the Board of the Sex Information and Education Council of the United States. Between 1978 and 1989 she was Consultant, Broadcast Standards and Practices of ABC Television.
Lorna Sarrel is a graduate of Mt. Holyoke College and the Columbia School of Social Work. In 1987, Mt. Holyoke honored her with the Alumnae Association’s Sesquicentennial Award for outstanding graduates. She has also received the President’s Medal from Kirkland College and the Elm and Ivy Award from the City of New Haven & Yale University.
What do you believe? Are you prepared to open your mind to new facts? Cognitive psychologists tell us that most people cling to what they already believe and are so averse to changing their minds ...
December 7, 2016 - 8:51am
The date for Heather’s hysterectomy arrived. They checked in on the morning of the surgery and talked with the doctor who would handle Heather’s anesthesia. Then Dr. D came in. She said to ...
September 28, 2016 - 4:40pm
When Heather and Ken were in Dr. D’s office to discuss the question of retaining Heather’s ovaries, they brought up another important topic. They asked Dr. D if and how the hysterectomy was likely ...
August 20, 2016 - 4:35pm
Before proceeding with a hysterectomy, Heather’s (our imaginary patient) gynecologist suggested that Heather have a D&C (dilatation and curettage) during which the lining of the uterus is scraped ...
August 1, 2016 - 3:45pm
In a series of new articles we want to share ideas to help a woman and her partner face a hysterectomy. We’ll talk about a fictional couple, Heather and Ken, who are in their early 40s with two ...
July 8, 2016 - 12:15pm
We think we haven’t written enough about men and vaginismus. In the spirit of our focus on “our menopause” we want to tell you about how men may be helpful in reversing the problem but how, ...
June 21, 2016 - 10:38am
When we (Phil and Lorna Sarrel) worked as a sex therapy team, we treated more than 500 cases of vaginismus and the success rate was close to 99 percent. We say this, not to toot our own horns, but ...
June 7, 2016 - 12:32pm
This is the second of four articles that will be on EmpowHER dealing with the problem of vaginismus. The third will describe how you can treat vaginismus.
As we described in the first article, ...
May 19, 2016 - 11:35am
An EmpowHER reader writes: In the months after my hysterectomy and removal of my ovaries, my vagina just stopped lubricating even when I felt sexually excited. So my husband and I went to the drug ...
May 10, 2016 - 4:19pm
Ahah was founded in 2014 to combat widespread fears about estrogen that were based on a misunderstanding of the results of one study-The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI). Ahah focuses on the 40 ...
April 29, 2016 - 9:57am
In a recent article on EmpowHER titled "Facing Menopause Together" we concluded with this advice, "So, turn from the computer to your partner and say 'I really need your help. I think I’m facing ...
April 8, 2016 - 12:58pm