Archive for the ‘Women’s Health’ Category

Saturday, March 30, 2013 @ 05:03 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

A uterine fibroid is a muscular tumor that grows in the wall of the uterus (womb).  This type of tumor is almost always benign.  The medical term for a fibroid tumor is a “leiomyoma” or “myoma.”  A woman may have a single fibroid or multiple fibroids at an given time and they can widely range in size from the side of a seed to the size of a grapefruit.

A large percentage of women will develop one or more fibroid tumors by the age of fifty.  They are most common in women in their forties and early fifties.  Some women with fibroids experience no symptoms at all.  For others, fibroids can be very difficult and cause symptoms such as pain, heavy menstrual bleeding, frequent urination and rectal pressure.

The exact cause of uterine fibroids is not fully understood at this point.  However, researchers believe that a variety of factors including hormone levels and genes may play a role in the development of uterine fibroids.

If you have uterine fibroids but are not experiencing any symptoms, your physician may recommend that you simply monitor the growth of the fibroids.  If you have symptoms, your doctor may recommend medications to shrink the fibroids or surgery to remove them.  Fortunately, advances in medical technology have provided a minimally invasive method for removing uterine fibroids.  This method is much safer than abdominal surgery and requires a much shorter recovery period.

Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. in Marietta, Georgia is pleased to offer MyoSure® to the residents of North Georgia.  MyoSure® is a minimally invasive and highly effective of fibroid removal.  If you are experiencing symptoms and think that it may be due to uterine fibroids, please contact Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. to get more information about MyoSure® and to find out if this solution is right for you.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.


Sunday, March 24, 2013 @ 09:03 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), breastfeeding in the United States is on the rise.  In fact, their breastfeeding report card shows that rates of initiation of breastfeeding rose from 74.6% in 2008 to 76.9% in 2009 births.  The rates of breastfeeding at six months also increased from 44.3% in 2008 to 47.2% in 2009 births.  These numbers represent the largest increases we have seen in more than a decade.

Some experts believe that the Internet and the increased flow of information brought about by computers has helped to educate more people about the benefits of breastfeeding to both the mother and the child.  There are many benefits to breastfeeding that are well-known such as the protection it provides to newborn babies against illnesses, allergies, etc.  There are other benefits that are not as widely known such as the fact that breastfeeding may help to protect your child from obesity later in life.  Studies have also shown a connection between breastfeeding and cognitive development.  Breastfeeding also offers many benefits to the mother.  Many mothers who breastfeed report lower stress levels and lower incidences of post-partum depression.  Other studies have shown a link between breastfeeding and a lowered risk for ovarian and breast cancers.

The bottom line is that breastfeeding provides your baby with everything he or she needs to grow and develop during the first six months of their lives.  For this reason, The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, although any amount of breastfeeding is beneficial.  However, the reality is that breastfeeding is more challenging for some mothers and their babies than others.  For this reason, hospitals and birthing centers offer lactation classes as well as lactation consultants that can help new mothers navigate the challenges of breastfeeding.  To find out about the educational materials and resources available to you, talk to your OBGYN today.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.


Wednesday, March 20, 2013 @ 11:03 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

If you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant, it is vitally important that you eat a healthy diet that is rich in the vitamins, mineral and important nutrients that you and your baby will need during this very exciting time.  Getting an adequate amount of folic acid is especially important before and during pregnancy and can help to prevent neural tubal birth defects such as Spina Bifida.  Calcium is also very important and can help keep you from losing bone density during your pregnancy.  Your baby will also need calcium for developing bones.  Iron is important to both you and your unborn child and can help your blood to carry oxygen to your unborn child.

Even with the healthiest of diets, it is often hard to get all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients you need during pregnancy.  That is why Obstetricians prescribe prenatal vitamins to all pregnant women.  There are many different types and brands of prenatal vitamins on the market.  Some are over-the-counter while others require a prescription.  A good prenatal vitamin should contain the following:

•  400 micrograms of folic acid

•  400 IU of Vitamin D

•  200 to 300 milligrams of calcium

•  70 milligrams of Vitamin C

•  3 milligrams of Thiamine

•  2 milligrams of Riboflavin

•  20 milligrams of Niacin

•  6 micrograms of Vitamin B12

•  10 milligrams of Vitamin E

•  15 milligrams of Zinc

•  17 milligrams of Iron

Before taking any type of prenatal vitamin or other medication or supplement during pregnancy, it important to first check with your health care provider.  Your OBGYN can determine which prenatal vitamins are best suited for your particular needs.  He or she may recommend more or less of certain vitamins and minerals based on your medical history and the individual circumstances surrounding your pregnancy.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. 


Saturday, March 16, 2013 @ 07:03 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

A Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive gynecologic procedure that allows your doctor to look directly at your your female reproductive organs.  It can be used to diagnose problems that may not be detected during a physical examination or on X-rays or other tests. In some cases, Laparoscopy can even be used to treat gynecologic problems.  Since it is a minimally invasive procedure and involves only a tiny incision, it can be done as an outpatient procedure and most patients are able to return home that same day.

Laparoscopy has many uses and is an important tool when it comes to Gynecologic care.  For women with pelvic pain, Laparoscopy can be used to diagnose the cause of the pain.  If the pain is being caused by adhesions (scar tissue), Laparoscopy can be used to remove or cut apart the scar tissue.  Laparoscopy can also be used to detect Endometriosis, another common cause of pelvic pain in women.  In addition, Laparoscopy can be used to effective diagnose and is some cases treat cysts or tumors on the uterus or ovaries.

A Laparoscopy procedure involves inserting a Laparoscope into your abdomen through a very small incision in your lower abdomen.  There is a light and a video camera attached to the Laparoscope so that your doctor can visualize your reproductive organs.  If needed, other instruments can be attached to the Laparoscope to treat conditions such as adhesions or cysts.  This minimally invasive procedure is very safe and carries far fewer risks than traditional abdominal surgery.

Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. is pleased to offer Laparoscopy procedures to the residents of Marietta and the surrounding areas.  Using this advanced technology, our OBGYN practice is able to effectively diagnose a myriad of problems effective the reproductive systems of women.

Posted on the behalf of a Marietta OBGYN practice.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013 @ 06:03 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

Many women experience pelvic pain before or during their monthly menstrual cycles.  Most of us just brush this pain off as an expected symptom of menstruation.  However, other common causes of pelvic pain include Endometriosis, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) and Fibroids.  In some cases, pelvic pain may be a sign of a more serious medical problem such as Ovarian Cancer.  For this reason, it is important to let your Gynecologist know if you are experiencing persistent pelvic pain.

Endometriosis in one of the most common causes of pelvic pain.  In fact, it is estimated that approximately five million women in the United States are affected by this problem.  Endometriosis is a condition in which the lining of the uterus (normally shed during the menstrual cycle), grows outside the womb.  This misplaced tissue can cause inflammation and pain.

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is another common cause of pelvic pain in women.  PID is an infection that many women with Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) such as gonorrhea or chlamydia get.  In addition to pelvic pain, PID may also produce other symptoms such as fever, vomiting and/or nausea.

Fibroids are another common cause of pelvic pain.  A fibroid is a benign mass of muscle tissue that can grow for years without producing any symptoms.  However, in some cases, fibroids can cause heavy, prolonged menstrual bleeding, intermittent spotting and painful intercourse.

If you are experiencing persistent or acute pelvic pain, the first step is to make an appointment to see your Gynecologist as soon as possible.  He or she will most likely perform a pelvic examination to try to determine the cause of your pain.  He or she may also want to run additional tests to confirm the diagnosis and to rule out more serious medical problems.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. 


Friday, February 22, 2013 @ 06:02 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

Birth control pills are a highly effective form of birth control and have been used successfully by women throughout the world since the 1960s.  However, they are only effective if they are taken regularly.  For some women, this can be a problem.  For women who travel frequently into different time zones or who are just forgetful when it comes to taking pills, birth control pills may not be the best option.

Fortunately, today there are several different forms of effective birth control that are available for women who do not want the hassle of taking a pill everyday.  Your options will depend on whether or not you are finished with childbearing.

If you are finished with childbearing and/or are sure that you do not want to become pregnant in the future, you may want to consider a tubal ligation procedure or Essure®.  A tubal ligation is a surgical procedure where a woman’s fallopian tubes are severed and then are cauterized to prevent pregnancy.  Essure® is a non-surgical method of permanent birth control that works with your body to provide natural barriers to pregnancy.

If you are planning on becoming pregnant in the future or if you don’t know whether or not you may want to become pregnant in the future, you will want to choose a method of birth control that is not permanent.  This may include a diaphragm or an IUD (Intra Uterine Device).  There are a variety of diaphragms and IUDs on the market today that offer a reliable method of birth control that is temporary and reversible.

Your Gynecologist can help you determine the best method of birth control to meet your needs as well as your lifestyle.  If you would like to get more information about the available options for birth control, please schedule an appointment with a board-certified Gynecologist today.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.




Wednesday, February 6, 2013 @ 01:02 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

It is February and love is in the air.  It is almost Valentine’s Day, the day that people all over the United States and the world celebrate love and romance.  But how did Valentine’s Day come to represent love and romance?  No one knows absolutely how this came about but Valentine’s Day contains vestiges of both Christian and ancient Roman tradition.  It is named after a patron saint, St. Valentine or St. Valentinus, who was martyred.  One legend contends that he was a priest who served during the third century in Rome.  At that time, the Emperor decided that single men made better soldiers than men with wives and families.  For this reason, he outlawed marriage for young men.  St. Valentine realized the injustice in this decree and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret.  When his actions were discovered, he was put to death. That is just one theory out of many.

Today, Valentine’s Day has come to represent a time when we celebrate love and romance and give cards and gifts to those we love to as a token of our affection.  For this reason, the card companies, candy companies and florists have come to love Valentine’s Day!  Some remain cynical about celebrating love on Valentine’s Day because of the fact that it has become overly commercialized.  However, the fact is, love, romance and sex can be good for your health.  Studies have shown that engaging in regular sexual activity has many beneficial effects on your overall health.  Having sex regularly can lower your stress level and your blood pressure and can also help to boost your immunity and help you to resist colds and other types of viruses.  Other studies have shown that people who are married have less of a risk for heart attacks than those who are single. These are good reasons to celebrate love and romance on Valentine’s Day!

But what if you are just not in the mood for romance?  Stress, fatigue, hormonal changes and other health problems can take a toll on your sex drive and make it difficult for you to get in the mood.  If you are not feeling romantic and are experiencing a lack of libido or a lack of interest in sex, it may be a good idea to talk to your Gynecologist about possible causes and treatments.  After an accurate diagnosis, your physician can recommend the appropriate treatment or treatments to help put the spark back in your relationship.

This year, on Valentine’s Day, celebrate by thanking your loved-one for your health!  You may want to play it safe and get a card and some flowers or candy too!  Happy Valentine’s Day.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.



Tuesday, January 29, 2013 @ 02:01 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

Urinary Incontinence is a problem that affects many women, and affects more women than it does men.  It involves the involuntary release of urine and the symptoms can range from bothersome to debilitating.  Since the involuntary release of urine can be embarrassing for those who suffer from urinary incontinence, the problem often goes untreated.  This can lead to a decreased quality of life for many women.

Urinary incontinence results from problems with the muscles and/or nerves that help to hold the bladder and to release urine.  Pregnancy, childbirth, weight gain, aging and Menopause can all play a part in causing this condition.  Urinary incontinence can also result from more serious medical conditions including birth defects, strokes, neurologic injuries and multiple sclerosis.

If you suffer from this problem, you are not alone.  In fact, it is estimated that approximately seventeen million women in the United States suffer from urinary incontinence.  It is also estimated that approximately twenty-four percent of women between the ages of eighteen and forty-four and twenty-three percent of women over the age of sixty are struggling with this common condition.

Once you have been diagnosed with urinary incontinence, there are a variety of treatment options that may be prescribed by your physician.  The type of treatment prescribed will depend on the cause of your symptoms, the frequency and severity of your symptoms, and your medical history.  The available treatment options include Kegel exercises, medicines, vaginal devices, injections, surgery and more.

If you are suffering from urinary incontinence, there is no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed and it does not have to interfere with your life.  Schedule an appointment with your doctor today so you can get on the road to an improved quality of life.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013 @ 04:01 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

Have you ever heard the term “she died of a broken heart?” While breaking up with a boyfriend or going through a divorce is not usually life-threatening, it can be hard on both your mind and your body.  A breakup can cause a lot of emotional strain leading to real physical changes in your body. This is often referred to as the mind-body connection. Maybe your stomach hurts or perhaps you just don’t have any appetite  at all. You may notice that you have this feeling in the pit of your stomach when looking at a picture or thinking about a past experience with your ex. You may feel achy all over and notice that your face is breaking out. What is going on?

An emotional trauma like a breakup can cause your adrenal glands to start churning out the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Cortisol and adrenaline are the hormones that are responsible for your body’s fight or flight response. When this natural response happens, it can cause your blood pressure to rise. Most of the time the  level of these hormones go back to normal after the stressful situation is over. However, if this fight or flight response stays turned on for a long period of time it can lead  to a myriad of physical problems.

If you have noticed that your stomach hurts or that you have a decrease in appetite, your stressed out nervous system may be sending a signal to your digestive system to slow down.  This stressed out nervous system can also decrease your immune system leaving you more susceptible to infections and viruses. If your skin is breaking out, higher levels of the hormone cortisol in your body may be triggering the buildout of pore clogging oil underneath your skin.

In most cases the old saying that “time heals all wounds” is true. Over time you may start to feel like yourself again. However if  your physical symptoms do not get better over time, is important to schedule an appointment with your physician so that he or she can prescribe the appropriate treatment or treatments to help you manage your symptoms and regain your quality of life.

Posted on the half of Marietta OB/GYN Affiliates P.A.


Thursday, January 10, 2013 @ 02:01 PM
posted by Dr. Carlos Alarcon

If you are a woman and have vowed to lose weight in the new year, you are not alone.  Every January, women all over the United States vow to lose weight and maintain a healthier lifestyle.  If you have been to your neighborhood gym lately, or to a weight watchers meeting, you may have noticed that it is a lot more crowded than it was prior to the New Year.  Although maintaining a healthy weight (BMI between 18.5 and 24.9) can be very difficult for some women, it is certainly a worthwhile goal. Studies show that overweight and obesity in women can increase the risks for a multitude of serious health problems including Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, Heart Disease, Breast Cancer and more.  In addition, achieving and maintaining a healthy weight can improve your overall health and your quality of life and help you to feel more confident about your appearance.

If you are one of the women who has vowed to lose weight in the New Year, it is important that you do it in a way that is healthy and that will enable you to maintain a healthy weight over time.  Diets that severely restrict certain food groups are not usually sustainable over time and can be detrimental to your overall health.  Before starting any diet or exercise program, it is important to first check with your physician to make sure that the program you have chosen will not be detrimental to your health.  Your physician can help you select a weight loss method that best suits your current state of health as well as your lifestyle.  You may even want to enlist the services of a Nutritionist.  A licensed Nutritionist can help you develop a daily eating plan that will foster weight loss while at the same time ensuring that you eat a balanced diet that contains all the important nutrients you need to remain healthy.

On the behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A., we wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year!  We wish you much success in meeting all of your goals in the new year!

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A.