Archive for the ‘Women’s Health’ Category

Thursday, September 6, 2012 @ 06:09 PM
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Hydrothermal Ablation (HTA) is a minimally invasive gynecologic procedure used to treat women with excessive or irregular uterine bleeding. It involves inserting a small probe into the uterus and flushing the uterine cavity with heated water to destroy most or all of the endometrium (the inner lining of the uterus).  No incision is needed.  It can be performed in a hospital setting under general anesthesia or as an in-office procedure using a local anesthetic.  Many advanced OGYN practices are now offering this service.  The doctors at Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. are specially trained to perform Hydrothermal Ablations and are fully staffed and equipped to perform this procedure in the comfort of their office in Marietta.

If you are experiencing excessive or irregular menstrual bleeding due to benign causes and are past childbearing age or finished with childbearing, you may be a good candidate for a Hydrothermal Ablation.  To find out for sure, schedule an appointment with one of the qualified Gynecologists at Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. He or she will discuss your specific symptoms and review your medical and family history to determine the cause of your irregular or excessive menstrual bleeding. He or she may also perform a pelvic examination and/or conduct other tests to rule out any serious problems including cancers.

After an HTA, most patients experience a significant reduction in irregular or excessive menstrual bleeding.  In some cases, the menstrual bleeding is stopped completely. If irregular or excessive uterine bleeding is negatively affecting your health and/or your quality of life, it is worth your while to talk to a doctor about a Hydrothermal Ablation. Call Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates, P.A. today to get more information about this life-changing procedure and to find out if you are a candidate.

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

Thursday, August 23, 2012 @ 11:08 AM
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If you wake up in the middle of the night soaked in perspiration and experience an intense flushing sensation starting in your head and neck and then spreading throughout your body, you may be experiencing hot flashes.  Hot flashes or “night sweats” are the most common symptom experienced by women prior to Menopause (perimenopause) and during Menopause.  The cause is not definitely understood, however, hot flashes are most likely caused by the complex hormonal changes (declining Estrogen levels) that accompany Menopause.  Not all women experience hot flashes prior to and during Menopause.  However, it is estimated that 75% of women will experience this condition at some point during the cessation of their menstrual cycle.

Although hot flashes are closely associated with Menopause, there are other causes.  Hot flashes can develop as a side effect of certain medications and can sometimes occur with some types of cancers and infections.  Your doctor will most likely diagnose the cause with a patient interview and a review of your family and medical history.  He or she may also perform a physical examination and/or order a blood test to test your hormone levels.

For some, hot flashes are simply a nuisance and do not interfere with daily life and activities.  However, for others, the hot flashes are severe and disruptive enough to seek treatment.  The available treatments include hormone therapy, bioidentical hormone therapy and other alternative therapies.  Your doctor may also recommend diet and other lifestyle changes to help reduce the frequency and severity of your symptoms.

If you are losing sleep and/or your quality of life is being negatively affected due to hot flashes and night sweats talk with your Gynecologist today.  He or she can help you decide the most appropriate treatment or treatments to suit your specific needs.

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

 

Monday, August 20, 2012 @ 09:08 PM
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If you suffer from urinary incontinence, you are not alone.  Urinary incontinence or loss of bladder control is a common problem and can be very embarrassing for the patients who suffer from it.  The severity can range from mild (occasionally leaking urine when you sneeze or cough) to severe (not making it to the bathroom in time).  It is not a disease but rather a symptom and can be caused by underlying medical conditions, physical problems or everyday habits.  Women are more likely than men to suffer from urinary incontinence and your risks increase as you age.  People who are overweight, smokers and those with diabetes or kidney disease are also more at risk for urinary incontinence.

The good news is that most cases can be treated with simple lifestyle changes or medications.  There are many different types of urinary incontinence including the following:

•  Stress Incontinence – occurs when you sneeze or cough or exert some other type of pressure on the bladder

•  Urge incontinence – sudden intense urge to urinate followed by an involuntary loss of urine

•  Overflow incontinence – frequent or constant dribble of urine

•  Mixed incontinence – you experience several different types of incontinence

•  Functional incontinence – physical or mental impairment keeps you from making it to the toilet on time

•  Total incontinence – continuous leaking of urine or periodic uncontrollable leaking of large volumes of urine

Treatment will vary according to the type and severity of urinary incontinence.  If you suffer from this annoying and embarrassing problem, do not hesitate to seek treatment from your physician.  Getting a proper diagnoses, determining the cause and initiating the most appropriate treatment of urinary incontinence can significantly improve your quality of life.

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

Friday, August 3, 2012 @ 08:08 PM
posted by admin

Part of the 2010 healthcare reform law took affect on Wednesday, August 1st and requires that policies provided by private health insurance companies pay for a list of women’s health preventative services.  These services include birth control pills, Pap smears and mammograms.  The new policy also gives women the right to free breast-feeding support, supplies for pregnancy-related diabetes, (gestational diabetes), and screening for domestic violence.  It is not known how many women will take advantage of these services.  However, the US Health and Human Services Department estimates that forty-seven million women, ages fifteen through sixty-four, have private health insurance plans that will be affected.

For some women, this will not be a change as some private insurance plans are already paying for these services.  Other women will have to wait to receive these services as the law applies to new policies only.  Women with existing coverage may have to wait for their policies to renew for the requirements to kick in.  This could take months for many women.

There are exceptions to the law as purely religious employers don’t have to provide certain services such as birth control to employees if they object.  Such groups include Catholic churches and universities.  They received a special accommodation forcing the insurance companies themselves to pay for the coverage.

For information about your particular insurance policy and to find out if you are affected by the healthcare reform law, contact your health insurance provider.  If you have not received your annual Pap smear and/or breast examination, schedule an appointment with your Gynecologist today.

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

 

Monday, July 30, 2012 @ 01:07 PM
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A vaginal yeast infection or “Candidiasis” is an infection of the vagina caused by a group of yeast.  It results from changes in the environment of the vagina that lead to an overgrowth of bacteria.  The most common causes include Antibiotic and Steroid use. However, yeast infections can also be caused by other factors such as pregnancy, menstruation, sperm, diabetes and the use of birth control pills.  Women who have already gone through Menopause are more likely to encounter a yeast infection than women who have not yet been through Menopause.

Symptoms include a change in vaginal discharge as well as burning and/or itching upon urination and/or sexual intercourse. The best way to accurately diagnose a yeast infection is with a full Gynecologic exam.  Treatment may involve over-the-counter or prescription medications.  Most yeast infections are superficial and clear up easily with treatment.

If you are experiencing the signs and symptoms of a yeast infection, it is a good idea to make an appointment to see a Gynecologist so that he or she can accurately diagnose the problem and prescribe the most appropriate treatment.  Other, more serious problems such as bacterial vaginosis and trichomoniasis can have similar symptoms as a yeast infection. Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted disease that affects both men and women.  If it is not properly diagnosed and treated, trichomoniasis can be spread to others during sexual activity.  Failure to treat trichomoniasis can also lead to problems with fertility.

Getting regular Gynecologic care including annual pelvic exams and communicating with your Gynecologist about any symptoms or changes you experience is a great way to protect you health and the health of your partner.  If you are experiencing the symptoms of a vaginal infection, schedule an appointment with your Gynecologist today.

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

 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012 @ 10:07 AM
posted by admin

Are you looking for a permanent means of contraception but do not want to have surgery?  In the past, permanent contraception required surgery; either a tubal ligation for a woman, or a vasectomy for a man.  Today, there are great, non-surgical options for permanent birth control including Essure® permanent contraception/sterilization.  Essure® is a patented, permanent birth control procedure that works with your body to create a natural barrier to prevent pregnancy. This patented system does not require surgery nor does it require the use of hormones or anesthesia.  Since 2002, over half a million women and their doctors have trusted Essure® as an effective means of birth control.

The Essure® procedure involves sliding small, soft inserts through the natural pathways of your vagina and cervix into your fallopian tubes: no surgery or incision is required.  Many advanced Obstetrics and Gynecology practices offer the Essure® system as an in-office procedure.  The procedure can be completed in as little as ten minutes and requires virtually no down-time for recovery.  For many busy women, this makes it a very attractive option.

Essure® is covered by most health insurance providers.  If the procedure is performed in a physician’s office, the cost may be as little as your co-pay, depending on your insurance coverage.  It is important to contact your insurance carrier prior to having the procedure to review your benefits and coverage.

If you may want to have children in the future, are pregnant or think you might be pregnant, have been pregnant in the last six weeks or have an active or recent pelvic infection, Essure® permanent sterilization/contraception is not a good fit for you at this time.  However, you and your doctor can best decide when and if the Essure® system is right for you.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday, July 14, 2012 @ 03:07 PM
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If you are in your late thirties or in your forties but have not yet entered Menopause and are experiencing heavy menstrual cycles or irregular uterine bleeding, you may be a good candidate for an Endometrial Ablation.  An Endometrial Ablation is a Gynecologic procedure used to treat heavy or irregular uterine bleeding by destroying the lining of your uterus.

During this procedure, a doctor will insert small tools through your cervix and into your uterus.  No incisions are required.  For Hydrothermal Ablation (HTA), a saline solution is circulated through the uterine cavity and gradually heated to destroy the uterine lining.  Once the lining has been destroyed, the uterine cavity is flushed with cooled liquid and then the instruments are removed.  The procedure takes around thirty minutes to complete and can be performed under either general or local anesthesia.  Many advanced Gynecology practices offer this service as an in-office procedure using local anesthesia.

After the procedure, most women are able to resume normal activities within 48 hours.  The most common side effect of HTA is cramping.  Cramping after an HTA procedure can usually be treated easily using a common pain reliever.

In women who participated in FDA trials and reported their data after one year, 40% reported complete elimination of their period.  Forty-two percent of women reported that their menstrual bleeding decreased to normal or lower levels.

Endometrial Ablation should not be used on women who may want to become pregnant in the future.  Your Gynecologist can help determine if an Endometrial Ablation is right for you.  Before prescribing an Endometrial Ablation, your physician will want to examine you and may want to perform some tests to make sure that your excessive uterine bleeding is from benign causes and not an indication of a more serious medical problem.  If you are experiencing heavy or irregular menstrual bleeding and are not planning on becoming pregnant in the future, talk to your Gynecologist to see if you are a good candidate for this life-changing procedure.

Posted on the Behalf of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates.

 

Thursday, July 12, 2012 @ 03:07 PM
posted by admin

If you have blonde hair, blue eyes and a slight build, you may be genetically at a higher risk for developing Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis.  Osteoporosis literally stands for “porous bones.”  Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis is caused by reduced Estrogen levels due to Menopause.  The reduced Estrogen levels lead to an increased rate of bone resorption.  When the rate of bone resorption is greater than the rate of bone formation, this leads to Osteoporosis.  Women who have Osteoporosis are more at risk for fractures and have a harder time healing if a fracture is incurred.  Common areas for Osteoporotic fractures include the hips and spine.

Even if you are genetically predisposed to Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis due to a family history, light coloring and a slight build, there are some things you can do to decrease your risk of developing this condition and incurring a fracture.  One is to refrain from smoking.  Smoking greatly increases your risk of developing Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis.  Getting an adequate intake of calcium either from food sources or from supplements is important when you are younger and still building bone mass as well as throughout your life.  Participating in weight bearing exercises such as walking running and lifting weights can also help you decrease your risk.  Weight bearing exercises cause the bones to become more dense and thus less at risk for fractures.  For some women, hormone replacement therapy may be prescribed after Menopause to decrease the risk for Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis.

The best way to determine whether or not you have Osteoporosis and to determine your bone health is to obtain a bone mineral density test using dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) technology.  If you are at a high risk for developing this disease, your physician may prescribe a bone density test.  For more information about Post-Menopausal Osteoporosis and to assess your risk, talk to a qualified Gynecologist today.

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

 

Saturday, July 7, 2012 @ 05:07 PM
posted by admin

Endometriosis is currently the leading cause of female infertility.  The symptoms may include heavy menstrual bleeding, increased menstrual cramps, abdominal pain, pain during intercourse and more. If you have any or some of the symptoms above and think that you may have Endometriosis, it is important to let your physician know so that he or she can diagnose and, if appropriate, provide treatment.

Diagnosis will usually involve a physical exam as well as other tests.  It may also involve a Laparoscopy.  A Laparascopy is a procedure that involves making a small incision in the abdomen and inserting a lighted tube to enable a physician to look at the female pelvic and abdominal organs.  During this procedure, a tissue sample may also be taken for a biopsy.  Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure and is a very important diagnostic tool for determining whether or not a patient has Endometriosis.  It can also be used to rule out other, more serious conditions.  In some cases Laparascopy may also be used to treat Endometriosis.  Hormonal therapies such as Progestins/Progesterone, GnRH-analogues, Danazol and Mirena may also be used to treat this chronic, painful condition.

If you are diagnosed with Endometriosis, your physician can help determine the best course of treatment based on the severity of your symptoms.  If you are planning on starting a family, it is especially important to first treat your Endometriosis to increase your chances of conceiving and maintaining a healthy pregnancy.

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

 

 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012 @ 12:07 AM
posted by admin

According to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2003-2006 and 2007-2008, approximately 64.1% of adult women in the United States are overweight or obese as defined by a Body Mass Index (BMI) greater than or equal to 25.  Over one third (35.5%) of adult women (over 20) in the United States are obese as defined by a BMI of greater than or equal to 30.  These number are expected to increase dramatically over the next few decades.

The risk factors for overweight and obesity include Type 2 Diabetes, coronary heart disease, hypercholesterolemia, gall bladder disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, breast cancer, pregnancy complications and menstrual irregularities. Most cases of overweight and obesity are caused by an energy imbalance although some medical and genetic factors may also play a role.  An energy imbalance in the body is created when more calories are consumed than burned. Treatments for overweight and obesity include a combination of diet, exercise, behavior modification and sometimes weight loss drugs.  In some cases of extreme obesity, bariatric surgery may be recommended.

Over the last few years, hundreds upon hundreds of new diets, weight loss products and exercise programs have been introduced to address the problem of overweight and obesity.  Some offer a quick fix or easy solution to weight gain.  However, the most effective weight loss programs involve a complete lifestyle change sustained over time.  If you are currently overweight or obese, you are putting yourself at risk for a variety of health problems.  Your weight may even be affecting your quality of life and self esteem.  Talk to your doctor today about implementing lifestyle changes to address this serious condition.

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