Posts Tagged ‘Obgyn’
For generations, the differences between men and women were always defined from a social aspect. Historically speaking, men were considered superior over women, and it was this ideology that managed to rule the co-existences of the two sexes for hundreds of years. As the goal of equality has continued to become a reality in modern societies, many of the differences between men and women have evened out to an equal playing field. When it comes to the physical gap, however, there will never really be equality.
Men and women will always differ in shape, weight, height, and anatomy. Both will experience their own range of physical, emotional and health problems as they relate to the specific sex. They have different problems, with different needs.
It’s why at some point in time, men will look towards finding a qualified urologist or male specific physician they can trust, and why women look towards finding a resourceful women’s health center or gynecologist (doctor for a female who specializes in the health needs of women) so that the problems and needs specific to the male or female body can be addressed.
While heart disease, cancer, weight management, the risk for diabetes, and many other ailments are common concerns for both men and women, there are specific conditions related to the female anatomy that a man will never experience. It’s the reason why annual visits to a gynecologist are so crucial to the long-term health of a woman.
According to the Women’s Specialists of Plano, a women’s health center in Plano, TX, there are a handful of common problems that women will experience that a man never will. These conditions and reasons to visit a doctor for a female, specifically, are why millions of young women begin seeing a gynecologist at a relatively early age.
When a woman is on her menstrual cycle, PMS can kick in and for some, it is bad enough that all normal activities will come to a halt. The symptoms of PMS can range from mild to severe and will include (for most women) cramping, bloating, mood swings, headaches and fatigue. Experts believe that hormones play the biggest factor in the severity of symptoms associated with PMS. Once a woman is under the routine care of a gynecologist, these symptoms can often be treated and managed each month.
Endometriosis is somewhat common among women. It is a female health disorder that occurs when the cells that typically reside in the lining of the uterus, grow in other parts of the body. The most common symptoms are very heavy bleeding and cramping, irregular periods, long-lasting menstrual cycles, and problems getting pregnant (infertility). Many gynecologists offer specialized treatment for endometriosis such as endometrial ablation, hysterectomy, and other minimally invasive techniques.
- Ovarian Cysts
Ovarian cysts are very common among the female population. These are small, fluid-like sacs that develop and grow in the uterus. Many women may have these benign growths and not experience any symptoms, while other women may have problems associated with ovarian cysts such as bleeding, cramping, and rupture. Gynecologists treat ovarian cysts as a routine procedure and today, many progressive treatments are an option including laparoscopic surgery, and robotic surgery for hysterectomy.
- HPV Virus
Genital human papillomavirus is notably the most common sexually transmitted infection among young women. There are varying types of HPV that can lead to a myriad of symptoms including pelvic pain, genital warts, and other conditions that can lead to larger problems such as cervical cancer. HPV can be prevented and it is a topic of discussion among gynecologists and their female patients. These conversations generally involve the discussion of prevention and treatment.
- Vaginal Infections
Bacteria and fungi are the culprits that lead to vaginal infections among women. It is one of the most common reasons why a woman will visit her gynecologist outside of her annual visit. Discharge, itching, vaginal burning and irritation are the symptoms associated with a vaginal infection. Antibiotics can usually cure most vaginal infections effectively. A gynecologist will be able to discuss prevention techniques to help keep future infections at bay.
- Pregnancy Prevention
Something that will surely differentiate a man and a woman until the end of time is pregnancy. Millions of women in the United States visit their gynecologist each and every year to discuss pregnancy prevention, birth control, and pre-natal care for if and when a pregnancy occurs. It is a topic of discussion at most OBGYN visits until a woman has had all of her children and begins the next phase of life (menopause). A gynecologist is the best resource to discuss pregnancy and pregnancy prevention with a woman.
Thousands of women will undergo a hysterectomy in a given year. A gynecologist may recommend a hysterectomy for many reasons, including for the treatment of fibroid tumors, PID, ovarian cysts, and endometriosis. Today’s technology has allowed skilled gynecologists to do hysterectomies robotically which leads to quicker recovery and a decrease in unwanted side effects. Robotic hysterectomies are not yet offered by all gynecologists as it takes extensive training and time to be able to master the technology; it is becoming more popular and a preferred choice among women.
Every city and state has a women’s health center that can offer a doctor for a female’s medical needs. Sometimes referred to as a women’s health physician, gynecologist, or OBGYN, they all meet the same challenge—keeping a female healthy both physically and in some case, emotionally. It’s important to see your doctor annually and sometimes more often if problems or an untreated condition persists.
The gynecologists from the Women’s Specialist of Plano (OBGYN in North Dallas) contributed to this feature.
Coming of Age: The Importance of Women’s Health and Finding a Compassionate, Trusting OBGYN for Years to Come
Expert interviews conducted with the Women’s Specialists of Plano (OBGYN in Plano, TX)
By the time a female turns 21, her body has already experienced a myriad of emotional and physical changes. With the onset of cyclic hormone production from the ovaries, secondary sexual characteristics such as breast development and pubic hair growth begins.
Approximately 18 months after this, and at about 100 pounds, the menstrual cycle begins. Frequently, these developmental milestones create individual issues that require a specialist’s input. The adolescent time (pre-teen to age 21) may also require consultation regarding infection, vaginal discharge, and contraception. As women age, the body continues to change, making gynecological “well-woman” visits and a trusted resource regarding healthcare for women even more important. This article discusses the importance of healthcare for women, and more importantly, finding a trusted, skilled practitioner who is in practice solely for the health of a woman, and understands the issues, conditions, and underlying factors that ultimately affect the health and well-being of the female body.
According to the Women’s Specialists of Plano, a group of gynecologists in Plano, Texas who provide women’s healthcare throughout North Texas, new guidelines in the area of Pap smears have evolved over the past several years. However, many of the other guidelines surrounding well visits and women’s physical health remain the same.
The new guidelines in the area of gynecological care state that a woman should have her first Pap smear around the age of 21. During a routine Pap smear, a gynecologist will insert a small instrument called a speculum into the vagina to visualize the cervix and collect a sample of cells to be checked under a microscope. If a Pap smear appears abnormal once it is analyzed, additional tests will be needed to diagnose the underlying cause of the abnormality.
Most women will continue to have a Pap smear every year following the first, but after the age of 30, it may not be required as often and many will begin having one every other year, or at the advice of their physician. One known fact is that Pap smears are crucial to a woman’s health. Medical professionals state that the occurrence of cervical cancer is higher in patients in whom a Pap smear was not performed, with the majority of diagnosed cases being in patients who have not had a Pap smear test in five or more years.
Even though the first Pap smear may not take place until around age 21, it is recommended that teenage girls begin seeing a gynecologist around the age of 15 for problems related to the female organs and puberty. By this time, they have most likely started their menstrual cycle and it is a good time to begin establishing a relationship with a trusted resource and talk about questions regarding contraceptives, gynecological issues such as menstrual cramps, abnormal bleeding, and hormonally-related mood swings, as well as STD’s.
In time, before the first Pap smear, a routine pelvic exam will be performed. During a pelvic exam, a gynecologist will look and feel the external and internal reproductive organs. This exam helps to make sure that these organs are healthy and that no underlying condition exists. Many medical professionals recommend a woman have their first pelvic exam if they have not started their menstrual cycle by age 16, by the time they have become sexually active, or have reached the age of 18. If a woman is a virgin it is still important to have this exam. Problems with bleeding, cramping, pain, or discharge, can be diagnosed and treated with this exam will help determine if there is a medical problem.
Women’s Healthcare—What Next?
After the age of 21, a woman should visit her gynecologist every year. Topics surrounding healthcare for women will become very important in the years that follow as additional body changes occur, and the topic of pregnancy and childbirth become more relevant. Routine Pap smears, pelvic exams, breast exams, weight, blood pressure and nutritional health will be at the forefront of these visits. Some gynecological conditions, such as Endometriosis, are often detected in women who are in their 20s. Endometriosis is a condition in which uterine endometrial tissue grows outside of the uterus on the fallopian tubes and ovaries leading to abnormal bleeding and cramping, and in some cases, infertility. Vaginal infections such as yeast infections are also more prevalent in this age group.
By age 30, the body will continue to change. The transition into menopause can last more than 10 years, but the average age for perimenopause can start as early as 35. During a woman’s 30’s, estrogen begins to naturally decrease within the body. In addition, between the ages of 30 and 40, a good percentage of American women will develop fibroids—small, benign growths that develop inside the uterine wall. If a woman has given birth and had difficult deliveries, issues such as incontinence or pelvic floor dysfunction may also arise. The American Cancer Society recommends that women have their first baseline mammogram between the ages of 35-40. After the age of 40, a mammogram needs to be an annual, consistent test so that if breast cancer is detected, the chances for a cure can be higher.
By age 40 and 50, a woman will begin to slowly transition into menopause. Other factors such as diet and exercise, bone density, osteoporosis, hormone therapy, and other important issues in women’s health may become a more prominent topic of discussion.
A Healthy Future
Women’s healthcare will always be an important topic. While there are known facts that are able to help guide a woman through the stages of her life, as well as knowing the conditions and diseases that may occur, the most important aspect is education. Every woman should educate herself and understand the various transitions and common gynecological conditions so that each phase of life is healthy, productive, and happy.
For more information about finding the right OBGYN doctor in Plano to serve your specific needs, please contact the Women’s Specialist of Plano for a list of services and locations.
Photo Credit: Creative Commons, Mike Baird
When to go to the gynecologist for the first time is a question that women have been asking for years. Once upon a time the answer to this question was around 21. But because women are becoming sexually active at progressively younger ages this question does not have a definitive answer. According to the gynecologists that make up the Plano, Texas based Women’s Specialists of Plano, “The most important concept to remember is that once you become sexually active, at whatever age, it is important to begin receiving regular pap smears. A pap smear test is the only way to be sure that you are free of STDs, ovarian, cervical or uterine cancer, or any other issues or underlying conditions that may occur with the reproductive organs.”
Your first OB appt and first Pap smear test is a common fear for every young woman. Oftentimes, the fear and anxiety can be so great that young women will purposely put off making that very first appointment. Most women are anxious about exposing their most intimate parts to a stranger and are also afraid that there may be an amount of pain associated with the checkup. Both of these fears are normal thoughts.
Drs. Murray Fox, Daryl Greebon, Jules Monier, Dennis Eisenberg and Jennifer Newton (Plano, Texas gynecologists) answered several questions for this Q and A designed to help you decide when the best time is to visit an OBGYN for the first time.
Q. First OB appt: When should I go to the gynecologist for the first time?
A. You should see your gynecologist for the first time upon becoming sexually active. Other reasons to visits the gynecologist would be:
- Abnormal bleeding outside of your normal menstrual cycle
- Menstrual periods become longer
- Menstrual periods become heavier and more painful
- An overall change or disruption in your menstrual period
- Severe pelvic cramps outside of your normal menstrual cycle
- Infections such as a bacterial infection or yeast infection that would cause itching, redness, burning or unusual discharge
Q. At what age should I have my first pap smear test?
A. The recommended age for a woman to receive her first pap smear is at age 21. Keep in mind that this age applies to a woman who is not sexually active, and has had regular, similar periods since the beginning of her menstruation.
Q. Why is it important to get annual pap smears?
A. It is important to return to your gynecologist annually because there are complications that arise without symptoms. This means that something could be wrong with your reproductive organs though you have no symptoms and no reason to believe so. The early stages of ovarian and cervical cancer will cause your pap smear to test abnormally; through a routine pelvic exam which is usually also included in these annual appointments, such abnormalities as tumors and cysts can also be diagnosed. Annual pap smears and pelvic exams allow your doctor to catch specific conditions at early stages so that proper treatment can be implemented and fertility can remain healthy. In addition, your gynecologist will check your breasts for any abnormal lumps during each annual visit. This is important because most women do not begin receiving regular mammograms until they are in their forties. Your gynecologist may be able to help you detect breast cancer in its early stages at your annual.
Q. Does it hurt to have a pap smear?
A. No, pap smears do not hurt. There will be a mild discomfort during the exam and for most women the first check-up will be uncomfortable. However, the majority of the discomfort is the result of the unknown. There should be no pain associated with your pap smear and all future visits will become easier each and every time.
Q. What does the gynecologist do during a pap smear?
A. Before the check-up a nurse will bring you a sheet and ask you to undress waist down. As your doctor comes into the room you will be asked to lie down and place your feet in stirrups which will keep your feet in place during the exam. Your doctor will then use a lubricated speculum to gently open your vagina. It is important to relax and take deep breaths during this part. The more relaxed you are the less uncomfortable you are likely to be. Your doctor will then use a long q-tip to swab the inside of your vagina. This swab is what is tested to determine if the cells are healthy, or abnormal. After your doctor swabs you using the speculum, the tool is removed and the exam will be finished.
Most women find that their anxiety about their first pap smear test disappears just as quickly as the actually procedure. But for some the anxiety returns every year when they go back for their annual. It is important to remember that your health should be rated much higher than your fear.
It is important to receive your checkup annually. But it is important to call your gynecologist sooner if:
- Your periods become irregular or cease
- Your periods become heavy
- You experience odor and/or discomfort
- If intercourse becomes painful
- If you think you may be pregnant
When the examination portion of your appointment is complete, your gynecologist will most likely meet with you and discuss a health follow-up with you and answer any questions you may have about such topics as birth control, etc. Finding the right OBGYN is just as important as going every year. Some women see the same doctor through their twenties, the birth of their children and into their mid-life years. If the time is now for you to find and visit an OBGYN, ask around to friends and family for a solid recommendation and make the appointment sooner than later.
Women’s Specialists of Plano Drs. Dennis Eisenberg and Murray Fox Perform First Robotic Hysterectomy on New DaVinci Si Machine with 8mm Camera at Medical Center Plano
Dr. Dennis Eisenberg of Plano, Texas, a pioneer in the use of the robotic hysterectomy surgical technique, recently completed his first hysterectomy surgery at Medical Center Plano using the new DaVinci Si machine. Dr. Eisenberg was assisted on this procedure by fellow surgeon Dr. Murray Fox of Plano, TX.
Plano, TX, August 23, 2011 –(PR.com)– Dr. Dennis Eisenberg of Plano, Texas, a pioneer in the use of the robotic hysterectomy surgical technique, recently completed Medical Center Plano’s first hysterectomy surgery using the new DaVinci Si machine. Dr. Eisenberg was assisted on this surgery by fellow robotic surgeon Dr. Murray Fox.
The DaVinci Si machine has an 8mm camera, the smallest camera that has ever been used for a robotic hysterectomy. The benefit for patients of the smaller camera offered by the new machine at Medical Center Plano is that it requires a smaller incision. This makes robotic hysterectomies performed with DaVinci Si machine even less invasive than the procedure already is.
According to Dr. Eisenberg, the patient “recovered and went home the next morning on Advil,” despite having additional procedures done.
Traditional hysterectomies typically demand long recovery and healing periods after the procedure is performed. Technological advancements like the advent of the robotic hysterectomy, which allow a for a hysterectomy to be performed using robotic micro-instruments that translate the precise movements of the surgeons’ hands while filtering out even the slightest tremors, have significantly reduced recovery times for patients.
Furthermore, robotic surgery has been proven to have unmatched precision and control, even with the smaller incisions that are necessary. High-definition, magnified 3D imaging allows for optimum viewing and manipulation of sensitive nerves, blood vessels and tissues.
Still, not all gynecological practices have adopted the DaVinci robotic hysterectomy surgery technique, despite how revolutionary a treatment option it has proven to be. “It will only be a matter of time until the robotic way is the only way,” explained Dr. Fox. “I’ve seen the difference it has made in hundreds of patients that walk through the Women’s Specialists of Plano doors. It is revolutionary to say the least.”
About Dr. Dennis Eisenberg
Dr. Dennis Eisenberg has worked as an OBGYN in the Frisco, McKinney, and Plano communities for over 11 years. He is a graduate of the University of Texas and completed his post-doctoral studies at St. Paul Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, and has been performing robotic hysterectomy procedures since July of 2007. He is a certified member of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
About Dr. Murray Fox
Dr. Murray Fox MD has been in private practice as an OBGYN serving the Plano, Frisco, and McKinney areas for 34 years. He has also served as Medical Director of the Plano Physicians Group since 1989, as well as the President & CEO Patient-Physician Network Holding Company. He is a graduate of the University of Texas and completed post-doctoral studies at University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Fox is a certified member of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and has been performing robotic surgical procedures since 2007.
About Women’s Specialists of Plano
Women’s Specialists of Plano provides comprehensive gynecologic care, as well as traditional and robotic surgical techniques. For patient convenience, the practice offers a wide variety of in-office services including Digital Mammography, 3D Sonography and DEXA Bone Density Scanning. The doctors at WSOP are committed to providing their patients with the most minimally invasive surgical treatments and procedures available such as da Vinci Robotic Surgery, a full range of laparoscopic and hysteroscopic procedures as well as in-office Endometrial Ablation.
See Original Article Here: OBGYN Doctor’s Perform First Robotic Hysterectomy at Medical Center of Plano
Treatment for Menorrhagia | Abnormal Menstrual Bleeding | Endometrial Ablation | Novasure Procedure | Plano, Texas
The gynecologists that make up the Women’s Specialists of Plano in Plano, Texas (http://obgynplano.com) were interviewed for this article.
If you are a typical female between the age of 12 and 50, having your period each month probably passes like a leaf in the wind. For many women, having a period may cause a few symptoms that can easily be managed by taking a simple ibuprofen and using some feminine protection—and then just like that, it’s gone. For others, this monthly visit from mother nature is a dreaded and life altering time that sends some women into hiding.
Amy is a normal, active mother of three in her mid-thirties with a hectic life. Her schedule was very busy between work, working out, ballet for her girls, soccer for her little boy, PTA, and maintaining a happy marriage. Amy didn’t have time to be slowed down by her period, yet for a few days every month she felt incapable of maintaining her schedule because her periods were so heavy, and so painful. So heavy in fact, that she found herself in the bathroom every hour to deal with the side effects of her period. She knew that her cycles hadn’t always been this heavy, or this painful, but thought the abnormal menstrual bleeding was just the result of the birth of her three children, and her active lifestyle.
After Amy’s last period she felt fatigued, and light-headed. Soon after, she met up with her girlfriends for lunch. Exhausted by her life altering periods and abnormal menstrual bleeding she decided to bring it up with her friends. “At lunch, I explained to my friends just how heavy and painful my periods had been all these years, and I was surprised that none of them had similar experiences,” said Amy. “In fact, they all were very concerned and advise me to see my doctor. So the next week I visited my OBGYN and was ecstatic to learn that my condition actually had a name.”
Amy’s doctor diagnosed her with Menorrhagia.
Menorrhagia is defined as an excessively heavy period, but can also cause extreme discomfort. Periods are different for every woman. Some are short and painless, and some are long and painful. But it is not at all normal for a woman’s period to affect her everyday life or keep her from performing her normal activities. Reasons to see an OBGYN with the suspicion of Menorrhagia are things such as:
- Periods that last longer than 5 days
- Painful periods with severe pelvic pain
- Periods that require double sanitary protection (tampon and pad)
- Bleeding through a tampon or pad in an hour or less for several hours in a row
- The passing of large blood clots
- Fatigue, pain, headaches, nausea
Though depression and social anxiety are not symptoms that point towards menorrhagia, they often are results of the problem. Women such as Amy, who normally have a very active and busy life, begin to invert, afraid of excessive and abnormal menstrual bleeding while in public or the inability to get to the restroom before leaking.
Thankfully, Amy found out that there are multiple options to cure this condition. After considering the number of years she had been suffering from heavy blood loss, and that she had three beautiful children and did not wish for anymore, Amy’s OBGYN explained to her that she was a great candidate for an endometrial ablation. With this procedure, the entire lining of the uterus is removed with the intent of preventing any future menstruation. The NovaSure procedure is one such approved endometrial ablation treatments for menorrhagia.
According to the gynecologists at the Women’s Specialist of Plano, “The NovaSure procedure uses radio frequency energy to permanently remove the lining and is always effective in slowing the bleeding, and at times prevents it completely. 95% of women who receive the ablation are very happy with the outcome. The only down side to the procedure is that it can prevent future pregnancies. We recommend the NovaSure endometrial ablation procedure when we can because it is a more conservative treatment option than procedures such as a hysterectomy.
Amy moved forward with the surgery. It was minimally invasive, almost painless, and had an extremely fast recovery. Amy was back to her busy schedule and fast pace life, but this time, without fear of leakage, and days spent at home due to pain and fear.
If you are a woman who is experiencing heavy periods that are interrupting your life, there is help. It is very important to track your period and be aware of changes in consistency, duration, and pain level. Don’t wait as long as Amy did, if changes arise consult your OBGYN today.
The Women’s Specialists of Plano (972.379.2416, http://obgynplano.com) specializes in pelvic floor dysfunction and vaginal prolapse. When Jean, a 74-year old resident of Plano, Texas, began having unusual and at times frightening symptoms during bowel movements, she decided to make an appointment with the Women’s Specialists of Plano. “What should have been an everyday normal bodily function for anyone, created stress and anxiety for me because every time I attempted to take a bowel movement, I felt as if my internal organs were coming out—and in most cases, they were,” said Jean.
Jean’s OBGYN, Dr. Murray Fox, diagnosed her condition as pelvic floor dysfunction, or in her case, a vaginal prolapse. It is a common disorder seen by the entire group of doctors at WSOP including Drs. Jules Monier, Dennis Eisenberg, Daryl Greebon and Jennifer Newton.
Pelvic floor dysfunction is a condition in which the muscles that uphold the reproductive and digestive organs of a female weaken, and fail to work properly. The immediate result of this muscle failure is “falling of the female organs”, or, a sensation of pelvic pressure or an actual falling of the organs dropping through the vagina. Difficulty passing stools and urinary incontinence are the most common immediate symptoms eventually causing pain, and even more alarming symptoms such as what Jean was experiencing. With the insertion of a vaginal pessary, Jean’s symptoms went away and she was able to resume life as normal.
During the early stages of pelvic floor dysfunction, it may be possible to re-strengthen the pelvic muscles through physical therapy and repair the damage before the dysfunction progresses. But due to the nature of the symptoms, it is commonly missed at an early stage, and the dysfunction becomes much worse.
When pelvic floor dysfunction is not treated properly or immediately it can cause problems of much larger proportions such as:
- Cystocele-The protrusion of the bladder into, and at times through the vagina.
- Rectocele-The protrusion of the rectum into, and at times through the vagina.
- Enterocele-The protrusion of the bowel into, and at times through the vagina.
- Urethrocele-The protrusion of the urethra into, and at times through the vagina.
- Vaginal Prolapse-The protrusion of the top of the vagina into the lower portion of the vagina completely inverting it. (This is most common in post-hysterectomy patients.)
Statistics suggest that 40% of women between 60-80 years of age will experience some degree of pelvic floor dysfunction or vaginal prolapse. At this age the dysfunction is the resort of multiple things including age, gravity, number of children, constipation, childbirth etc. However, it is important to note that 1 of every 3 women of 25 and up will suffer from the dysfunction as well. The most common causes being pregnancy, obesity, vaginal delivery, and menopause.
If you begin to notice symptoms that lead you to believe that you may be suffering from any degree of pelvic floor dysfunction, consult with your physician as soon as possible. Pelvic floor dysfunction is diagnosed through a series of testing. Your doctor will begin their testing with a careful study of your medical history, symptoms, and physically or emotionally traumatic experiences that could be contributing to the physical and emotional pain of this disorder. Specific tests will be administered to determine which muscles are not properly performing their job.
Pelvic floor dysfunction may be treated with specialized physical therapy known as biofeedback if the dysfunction is found at an early stage. With biofeedback, a person may be able to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and remind the body to perform these tasks as it should. Approximately 75% of individuals with pelvic floor dysfunction experience significant improvement with biofeedback.
Many times, pelvic floor dysfunction patients and those suffering from vaginal prolapse will need corrective surgery. Using a vaginal pessary or a mesh device is often effective for curing the problem. A vaginal pessary can be inserted into the vagina to support the prolapsed organs. Meshes to secure organs into place are also commonly used. Using sutures, a mesh is used to help keep the bladder, uterus or other pelvic organs secure. Using a pessary or a mesh will commonly alleviate symptoms.
If you are experiencing unusual symptoms that you believe may be associated with pelvic floor dysfunction, consult with your doctor and learn about the treatment options that are available to help you with your specific situation.
Dallas, Plano, TX (http://obgynplano.com) – There is a reason why the popular “Got Milk?” advertising campaign hits home for so many people. The models in the ads look healthy, vibrant and strong. If these ads are insinuating that a glass of milk each day makes you strong and healthy, and helps keep weak bones at bay, then pour me a double.
While a lack of calcium (read information regarding calcium intake recommendations) is one cause of weak bones that can lead to osteoporosis, there are many others that lead to this common, debilitating disease. Osteoporosis is a skeletal condition that causes bones to become weaker, less dense and more brittle. It is often referred to as the “bone thinning” disease and affects 25 million people each year with approximately 80% of these being women.
Though symptoms may not appear until later on in adulthood, the bone thinning process actually begins in women around age 30 as this is when estrogen starts to decrease naturally within the body. By age 65, 80% of women will have some form of bone density loss. The disease alone is responsible for hundreds of thousands of fractures seen in area emergency rooms across the U.S. and accounts for billions of dollars in medical care. Even more alarming, in older adults, a hip fracture due to osteoporosis has very limited recovery prognosis and many will require constant care in helping with daily activities. In addition, many die of the complications during the recovery process. This is the whole rationale for treating osteopenia and osteoporosis: prevent fracture.
So what do you need to know about osteoporosis? The physicians at the Women’s Specialists of Plano provide bone density test screening daily to local Dallas area women and were helpful in addressing this very question.
Those at Risk
There are many risk factors as to why a woman might develop osteoporosis including a family history of brittle bones, fair complexion, poor nutrition, smoking, low weight, alcoholism, a long-term low calcium intake and an estrogen deficiency. In addition, there are many medical conditions associated with this disease such as multiple sclerosis, anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, eating disorders, pulmonary disease and many, many others. Certain long-term prescription drug use also affects bone loss. Research has concluded that Caucasian women are at most risk over Hispanic, Asian African American and Indian. For the most part, anyone could be at risk for developing osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis Prevention: What can You do?
At a young age, even in the teen years, women can begin a life of healthy choices that will help delay bone loss for a long time. Most women will not even think about getting a bone density test until long after their teen years. Until then, one should avoid cigarettes and alcohol and focus on a healthy lifestyle, eating a healthy diet rich in protein, vegetables, calcium and vitamin D (both will help strengthen bones.) Exercise and strength training is also very important. Women should educate themselves on the foods that help to prevent this disease as well as the medications that can lead to brittle bones. Unfortunately, there are some risk factors that cannot be changed including age, menopause, gender, family history and other medical problems.
Living with Osteoporosis
Women should discuss bone loss and osteoporosis during their next visit for their well woman care. Bone density tests and a dual density bone densitometer can (often) determine how much bone loss has occurred. This is important to know so that an appropriate plan for the treatment for osteoporosis can be provided. The key to managing osteoporosis is to prevent more bone loss from occurring through healthy eating, exercise, and overall healthy lifestyle habits. Preventing injuries and falls becomes crucial for those living with this disease; this can be done by closely monitoring how you walk and where you step, wearing a brace when needed, and being aware of your surroundings at home where falls might occur. When osteoporosis becomes painful, causes fractures, etc., physical therapy, pain relievers and electrical nerve stimulation can be recommended treatment for osteoporosis to offer comfort. In addition, new drugs on the market today can offer exceptional treatment solutions for many women. Bisphosphonates, forteo, reclast and prolia are examples of the drugs that are being prescribed to thousands of women.
Although osteoporosis is something that every woman is at risk for developing, the lifestyle changes mentioned in this article are proactive modifications that can be made in order to onset the delay of symptoms. Please discuss your concerns with your doctor today and create a plan to keep your bones healthy and strong.
See other articles from obgynplano on the subject of osteoporosis.
The article below was written by Kristy Theis, Medical Content Editor for eMedical Media in Dallas, TX. It was featured on Hubpages May 12, 2010 and written on behalf of the Women’s Specialists of Plano.
“I Have Uterine Fibroids. Should I be concerned?”
The doctors that make up the Women’s Specialists of Plano (972.379.2416) see their fair share of uterine fibroids weekly at their North Texas OBGYN office. Uterine fibroid tumors are one of the most common gynecological conditions affecting American women today—in fact, this year alone, almost 1 in 4 will be diagnosed with these benign uterine tumors. While the majority of uterine fibroid tumors are non-cancerous, there is the incidence of malignancy (cancer) in about 1 in 10,000—making fibroids a worrisome diagnosis for thousands of women.
Not too long ago, most American women were sent down the road of having a hysterectomy when diagnosed with uterine fibroids. I recently interviewed a group of Plano, Texas-based gynecologists—as well as some of their patients—and was pleasantly surprised to learn that there are in fact several options for patients suffering from uterine fibroids.
Fibroids are tumors that develop in the uterus, most often, affecting women over the age of 30 and still in childbearing years. They can be very small, exist as one or in groupings, can be slow or fast growing, and for many, symptoms will be almost non-existent. For many women, on-going and at times continuous cramping, bloating, constipation, heavy bleeding and a feeling of pressure and pain in the uterus can exist. For women with a personal or family history of cancer, knowing that these tumors exist within the uterus can be troublesome making the treatment of uterine cysts a very important decision for them.
When I met with Patricia, a patient of Dr. Murray Fox, a physician with the Women’s Specialists of Plano practice, she described symptoms that sounded more like a pregnancy than a uterine fibroid. Her non-cancerous uterine tumors presented themselves years earlier and over time began to grow until the end result was a cantaloupe size tumor. With a growth so large, she decided to have a full hysterectomy because once the tumor was removed, much of her uterus would have to be removed with it. Since Patricia was past her child-bearing years, a hysterectomy was an acceptable route to take.
According to Dr. Jules Monier, a gynecologist with Women’s Specialists, most women will be diagnosed in the earlier stages through routine pelvic exams.
“We are able to diagnose uterine fibroids early on in most cases and monitor them with each patient. During this time, conservative treatment of uterine cysts can be provided. It’s important for women to be cognitive of their symptoms and pay attention to what their body is telling them so that a more aggressive treatment option can be considered if necessary. No woman should be expected to endure the harsher symptoms that can come along with uterine fibroids.”
The exact causes of fibroid tumors are unknown. The Women’s Specialists of Plano experts agree that treatment of uterine cysts is not necessary with uterine fibroids unless at least one of the following conditions are occurring:
- The uterine fibroid is greater in size than a 12-week pregnancy
- The uterine fibroid(s) is growing
- The uterine fibroid(s) is causing bleeding
- The uterine fibroid(s) is causing pain
- The uterine fibroid(s) is associated with pregnancy loss
Treatment options available today are vastly different than years ago. “Before our patients have to consider a hysterectomy for their uterine fibroids, they do have other treatment options, that in most cases, are successful. Uterine artery embolization and myomectomy procedures are highly effective treatment options and are generally recommended before a hysterectomy,” Says Dr. Daryl Greebon, a Plano, Texas-based OBGYN.
During a uterine artery embolization procedure, physicians use an x-ray camera to inject small particles through a catheter directly aimed at the fibroid. These particles block the arteries that provide blood flow and essentially cause the fibroids to shrink.
A myomectomy is a surgical procedure where the fibroid tumors are surgically removed. This procedure can be done with an open incision or using a more minimally-invasive technique such as the robotic myomectomy. The robotic method reduces the side effects of the surgery and overall recovery. A myomectomy, in general, is considered one of the only surgical treatment options that preserve fertility.
In the procedures mentioned above, a large majority of women experience relief with their symptoms.
Robin is another patient of Women’s Specialists I interviewed and one who had a dramatically different outcome than my earlier subject. She also battled uterine fibroid tumors since she was in her late 20’s and because she still desired to have children, she opted to have a robotic myomectomy. Dr. Dennis Eisenberg performed the surgery robotically and today, she remains symptom free from her fibroid tumors. Although the risk of them returning does exist; she has not had any real significant growths or reoccurrences.
Dr. Murray Fox explains, “Uterine fibroid tumors can affect the quality of life. I have had young women who are afraid to go to their places of business for fear they will soak through their clothes due to heavy bleeding caused by fibroids, and others who have experienced weight gain in the abdominal area because of fast growing and oversized tumors. The question I go over with my patients first is should the fibroid tumors be treated? If the answer is yes, we discuss how.”
It is extremely important to talk to your gynecologist, get all of the facts revolving around your specific uterine fibroid tumors and review all of your options to help you decide the best outcome for your particular situation, future desires and current lifestyle.
About the writer:
The gynecologists and patients of the Women’s Specialists of Plano contributed to this article.Visit them on the web at www.obgynplano.com.
Dr. Murray Fox, a Plano gynecologist, and Dr. Daryl Greebon, a Plano OBGYN, of Women’s Specialists of Plano have joined the Faith in Practice medical mission team currently in Guatemala. Dr. Fox and Dr. Greebon are medical mission veterans and find the experience incredibly rewarding. Dr. Murray Fox and Dr. Daryl Greebon will volunteer their surgical expertise to poor Guatemalan women in need of gynecologic surgery. The surgeries they perform will include removal of uterine fibroids, hysterectomy and vaginal reconstruction.
Faith in Practice’s mission is to improve the physical, spiritual, and economic conditions of Guatemalan’s poor through short-term surgical, medical and dental mission trips and health-related educational programs
The large FIP team of surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, administrators, clergy, translators, oral surgeons, dental hygienists, and a photojournalist will travel to Reutealeahu, Guatemala from February 26, 2010 through March 7, 2010. The team will provide short-term surgical, medical and dental care. Prior to the mission, the team gathers all the supplies that will be required for performing surgery and post-operative care. Each team member typically brings 2 trunks of medical supplies. In total, 86 trunks arrived in Guatemala for this mission.
At the beginning of the trip, the FIP team will assess all surgery candidates and prepare a surgical schedule. The remainder of the week will be spent in surgery and providing after care.
To follow Dr. Fox and Dr. Greebon while they are on their medical mission, a Facebook Fan Page has been set up, Faith In Practice-Greebon Team 244.
Women need to make their health a priority and take care of themselves, especially during the busy holiday season. It is so easy to put off exercise, eating well and making time for yourself when there are so many other things to do and people/family to take care. There is no denying the link between women’s health and lifestyle. It is vital to a woman’s health that her well-being be put at the top of the season’s “to-do” list. During this hectic time of year, be sure to make time for exercise, getting plenty of sleep, and general down-time.
Dr. Daryl Greebon, Plano Gynecologist at WSOP, is a source for the article “Putting Self First is Vital to Good Health as Mom, Wife”.