Posts Tagged ‘Ovaries’
The Women’s Specialists of Plano, Texas (http://obgynplano.com) put together this informational sheet on Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. They treat women—most commonly under the age of 35—who suffer from this gynecological disease. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, or P.I.D. as it is commonly referred to, is an uncomfortable and at times deadly disease that affects a small percentage of women during their childbearing years. The symptoms of P.I.D. can be painful and very uncomfortable. It’s important for women to understand what P.I.D. is, how it is transmitted, treated and what they can do to prevent themselves from getting it.
Q. What is P.I.D?
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease is an infection of the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries and other reproductive organs that is caused by the transmission of foreign bacteria. It is a potentially serious complication that can lead to damage of the reproductive organs, miscarriage, and infertility.
Q. How Common is P.I.D.
It is estimated that approximately 750,000 women within the United States are affected by P.I.D. each year. It is most common among women with multiple sex partners, and least common among women in monogamous relationships. Women in their childbearing years (under the age 25) that are sexually active are at a higher risk of contracting P.I.D. than women over 25 years of age. A woman who has previously been diagnosed with P.I.D. is at a heightened risk of contracting the disease again.
Q. How Does a Woman Contract P.I.D?
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease is initiated when a foreign bacteria moves through the opening in a woman’s cervix and up into the reproductive organs. The disease can be contracted many different ways, but is most commonly caused by: The STD’s Gonorrhea and Chlamydia, Douching, and Intrauterine Devices.
Q. What are the Symptoms of P.I.D?
P.I.D commonly goes unnoticed in its early stages, even though it may be causing great damage to a woman’s reproductive organs. Common symptoms of P.I.D. as the disease progresses include:
- Lower Abdominal Pain
- Foul Smelling Discharge
- Pain during Intercourse
- Irregular Menstruation
If the disease is not found and treated promptly, P.I.D. can cause infertility, ectopic pregnancy, severe pain, and death.
Q. How is P.I.D. Treated?
Antibiotics are used to treat P.I.D. although they cannot reverse any damage that may have already taken place inside the female reproductive organs. In most cases the antibiotics will cure all symptoms associated with disease as long as the medication is taken as prescribed. If a woman is sexual active prior to being treated for P.I.D the woman’s partner(s) should also be treated as they may also be infected with the bacteria, though they may not have symptoms.
A woman may have to receive inpatient treatment via the hospital is she is experiencing high fever, is pregnant, or is experiencing a tubal pregnancy as a result of P.I.D.
Q. How Can Women Protect Themselves From P.I.D?
The best answer to this question is to abstain from sexual intercourse, unless you are sure your partner is uninfected by any STD. It has been found that woman in a monogamous relationship are at a much lower risk of contracting the disease than those who have multiple partners. If abstinence is not an option for you, then it is important to make use of protection such as condoms. Condoms have been shown to help prevent the transmission of STDs though they are not 100% effective.
If a woman noticing any unusual symptoms (such as: irregular period, a genital sore, or foul smelling discharge) she should consult her OBGYN immediately. P.I.D. can be prevented if an STD can be treated before it causes serious complications.
And last but not least, any sexually active woman should be screened for STDs regularly and thoroughly.
The stage of life between a young woman’s fertility, and the menopause of a woman’s later years is called peri-menopause. Peri-menopause begins in a woman’s late 30s to early 40s and can last 3-15 years. According to Drs. Fox, Greebon, Monier, Eisenberg and Newton, Plano, TX gynecologists that make up the Women’s Specialists of Plano (972.379.2416), “This number is different for every woman, but one fact that remains the same is that during this phase, undesirable effects will take place to a woman’s body.”
Peri-menopause is onset by the fluctuations of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. These normal hormone changes are the result of the ongoing decrease of eggs inside a woman’s ovaries. As these eggs decrease, there is no more cyclic estrogen and progesterone production. The symptoms a woman will experience during due to these biological changes most often reflect peri-menopause. The most obvious sign that a woman may be in peri-menopause is the change in her menstrual cycle. It is important to highlight what a normal period looks like for most women:
- The start of one period to the start of the next should be at least 21 days
- Periods should last less than 10 days
- There is no spotting in between periods
- Periods should be no further apart than 90 days
Because all women’s cycles are unique, peri-menopausal bleeding changes will be unique to each woman. Some women notice a very heavy period one-month, followed by the absence of a period the next month. Others may experience more frequent periods that appear less than the average 28-32 days apart. Some woman may only spot during their period for several months, while others notice heavier bleeding throughout. Only you will know if your cycle has changed. The sporadic distribution of estrogen and progesterone is to blame for menopausal bleeding changes and is inevitable.
The natural hormonal imbalance that takes place inside of a woman’s body may cause other undesirable symptoms. Some of the symptoms of peri-menopause include:
- Hot flashes
- Sleep problems (which affects 75% of all peri-menopausal women)
- Mood changes
- Vaginal dryness
- Bladder problems
- Decreased fertility
- Increase in bad cholesterol
- Loss of bone mass
- Weight gain
Other common symptoms of peri-menopause include bouts of depression; it is also very common for a woman in these years to suffer from a loss in libido and decreased sexual arousal.
The Transition from Peri-Menopause to Menopause
Every woman is born with a certain amount of eggs. She will not produce anymore throughout her life. As a woman ages, so do the ovaries which is where the eggs reside. During pre-menopause the fluctuation of hormones within a woman’s body begin to make it difficult for the eggs to reach the point of ovulation, causing the above mentioned symptoms for a peri-menopausal woman. As it becomes increasingly difficult for an egg to reach ovulation, ovulation begins to cease. After an egg is no longer able to reach ovulation at all, ovulation ceases completely and so does a woman’s cycle. It is at this time that a woman’s transition from peri-menopause to menopause is complete.
It is important to remember that peri-menopause is the stage before menopause and does not mean that you have crossed over the bridge. A woman in peri-menopause has a decreased likelihood of getting pregnant, but it is still possible. A woman is not considered menopausal until she has been without a cycle for a full 12 months. If you are peri-menopausal and aspire to have a child, talk to your doctor about your options.
Peri-menopause shows itself differently in every woman. Some may find it alarmingly obvious that their body is changing, while others may soar through peri-menopause into menopause without ever noticing a single hot flash. However it is important to note that if you are noticing that the symptoms of peri-menopause are beginning to affect parts of your daily life you need to speak with your doctor. He or she will discuss your options with you and help you to find comfort during this transition.
There are several approaches to easing the transition from peri-menopause to menopause; only your doctor will be able to decide what option is best for you. Some methods that women have found helpful to help minimize the symptoms of peri-menopause include:
- Low dose birth control, for the relief of hot flashes and the changes associated with menopausal bleeding.
- Exercise, which is good for your health and known to help a woman receive better rest.
- Vaginal lubricants and sex therapy, to help recover the loss of libido.
- A diet full of calcium, to help protect against the loss of bone mass.
- Anti-depressants, to help control the mood swings and bouts of depression.
The Women’s Specialists of Plano in Plano, Texas include Dr. Murray Fox, Dr. Daryl Greebon, Dr. Jules Monier, Dr. Dennis Eisenberg, and Dr. Jennifer Newton. They offer adolescent gynecology, obstetrics and treat women even past the menopausal years. As a woman’s body goes through the myriad of changes from teenage to menopause, it’s important to have a trusted resource to answer questions and receive regular well checks. Peri-menopause, while it can be a troublesome condition for many women, is treatable on some levels. Contact your physician today to learn more.
Menopause Symptoms and Treatments | Hormone Replacement Therapy | Estrogen Replacement Therapy | Plano, Texas
When I interviewed some of the physicians at the Women’s Specialist of Plano, Texas (http://obgynplano.com, 972.379.2416) for a women’s health feature on the topic of menopause, I assumed they would tell me the obvious: that menopause is simply a phase all women go through that causes unwanted symptoms and an end to all menstrual periods.
I was right, they did. But I also learned a lot more during my discussion with Drs. Murray Fox, Daryl Greebon, Jules Monier, Dennis Eisenburg and Jennifer Newton—all skilled and experienced gynecologists with WSOP—that really made me think differently about the “change of life.”
Menopause symptoms and treatments are different for every woman and there is a range of options for each specific case. As a 37-year old female, I thought I still had a long time until I had to deal with the side effects of menopause. I distinctly remember my mom going through it at age 50 when she had a serious hot flash during the middle of my engagement party.
The truth—is that what I saw in her, were symptoms she had been dealing with for several years.
What Is Menopause?
Every woman is born with a certain number of eggs. These eggs are stored in the ovaries and it is in the ovaries that the hormones estrogen and progesterone are produced, which regulate ovulation and menstruation. Menopause occurs when the ovaries no longer produce an egg every month and menstruation stops. Natural menopause is a normal condition that occurs in all women between the ages of 40-58. Natural, meaning that menopause occurs without the side effects of any medical treatment such as a hysterectomy or chemotherapy. All women will experience some of the same symptoms from menopause as they age, but all will experience one common characteristic: their reproductive period will come to an end.
While the end to a menstrual cycle is a welcomed part of menopause, there are a number of unwelcome symptoms associated with this change. They include: irregular periods, missed periods, fatigue, mood swings and irritability, insomnia, depression, headaches, muscle aches and pains, bone loss (osteoporosis), incontinence and changes in sex drive (libido) as well as a decrease in vaginal lubrication. In additions, many women will experience hot flashes and night sweats. Fortunately, many of the symptoms associated with menopause are temporary and will eventually disappear once menopause ends.
Help for Menopause
For women who choose to discuss menopause symptoms and treatments with their physicians, it is reassuring to know that there are many natural and home remedy steps one can take to help decrease and prevent some of the symptoms such as exercise, yoga, eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of rest. Many women learn how to cool a hot flash by learning what triggers them. This helps them limit when hot flashes will occur and control them when they start.
For women that need additional help during menopause, there are medications that can be taken to help minimize the symptoms such as antidepressants, bone loss medications, Clonidine (a high blood pressure medication that helps ease hot flashes), vaginal estrogen creams and Progestin pills which help with irregular periods before menopause occurs.
Hormal Replacment Therapy: Is It Right For You?
The onset of menopausal symptoms occur when the body stops producing estrogens. There are three types of estrogen produced in the human body and all three of these occur in balanced proportions, and although they are closely related, each has its own special function:
- Estradiol is the primary estrogen hormone and in nature it comprises 80% of the estrogen a woman’s body makes.
- Estrone is the least prevalent of the normal estrogens in women. It increases significantly during pregnancy, but is a bit weaker than estradiol in its effect.
- Estriol is the third natural estrogen, and is also less potent in estrogen effect than estradiol.
Menopause symptoms and treatments will vary for each woman. For many women, hormone replacement therapy is used in the post-menopausal patient to minimize symptoms caused by the lack of a predictable estrogen-progesterone production. While hormone replacement is not for everyone, it has made a difference in millions of women’s lives. Patients are generally divided into two groups: those with a uterus and those without. Patients without a uterus are usually treated with estrogen alone (estrogen replacement therapy – ERT); while those with a uterus are treated with estrogen and progesterone (hormone replacement therapy – HRT).
Likewise, hormone medications are also divided into groups: natural (made from soy, yam or other roots), bio-identical (compounded by a pharmacy) and synthetic (manufactured by pharmaceutical companies). In a woman who still has her uterus, ANY form of estrogen can stimulate the uterine lining and cause bleeding issues and the risk of endometrial cancer. The key in preventing this problem when estrogen replacement therapy is needed is to use progesterone with it in an adequate amount to protect the endometrium. For women who do not have a uterus, the endometrium is gone, and there is no need for progesterone, which can make estrogen therapy easier whether it is a cream, pill, or patch.
HRT and ERT: Pill or Cream?
Is it better to take a pill, or use topical therapy? This too has been debated for years. Not all people respond equally well to the same product, so one woman may find it easier in her routine of life to take a pill. Another may not react well with the pill, or may have trouble remembering to take a pill regularly and may be a better candidate for the patch, vaginal ring or for estrogen cream. Each method works the same and it is important for a woman to find the best match for her and for her current lifestyle.
Hormone Replacement Therapy and Breast Cancer
The link between estrogen and breast cancer has been a highly discussed topic over the last decade. According to Dr. Murray Fox, “Much of the data that has been reported in the media regarding the link between estrogen and breast cancer has been vastly misrepresented. The media touts that 30% or 40% of women develop breast cancer while taking estrogen. Those numbers are distorted. In recent tests that included several groups of 10,000 women, out of those who had no hormone treatment, 28 developed breast cancer; those with hormone treatment resulted in 36 women who developed breast cancer. In a similar group of women who took estrogen alone, without any progesterone (because they had had hysterectomies), there were 7 fewer cases of breast cancer, suggesting that it is not primarily estrogen that causes the problem, but is the combination of estrogen and progesterone.”
Dr. Daryl Greebon agrees, “It is important for women to understand that estrogen poses greater risks for other medical issues than cancer. The primary risk of estrogen is blood clots (phlebitis); this can include blood clots in the leg, pulmonary embolus, or stroke. These risks exist with any estrogen replacement therapy whether oral or topical, and whether compounded or not.”
Dr. Jules Monier and the other physicians at the Women’s Specialist in Plano, Texas recommend their patients who are on estrogen replacement therapy use the lowest dose of estrogen possible for the shortest time possible, preferably no more than 5 years. “However, quality of life is an important consideration, and as with all medical treatments one must weigh the benefits and the risks. For women who have incapacitating symptoms it may be worth the risks to have a better life style, this is an individual choice, “ says Dr. Monier.
Menopause symptoms and treatments and the best solution to handle the “change of life” can be a complex issue for many women. Each woman should discuss the options that are available with their doctor. The choice of using HRT or ERT should be made based on a balance of risks and benefits. While there are risks to consider, for those women who suffer severely from menopausal symptoms, hormone replacement therapy and estrogen replacement therapy can make a major difference in their life.
About the writer: Kristy Theis is the content editor for EmedicalMedia. The physicians that make up the Women’s Specialists of Plano, Texas were interviewed for this article.
Jules Monier, MD of Women’s Specialists of Plano was interviewed for the below article originally published in Articlesbase on September 2.
Endometrial Ablation: The Simple Way to End Heavy Periods (Menorrhagia) Without a Hysterectomy
Author: Kristy Theis
If you are a woman who dreads her monthly menstrual cycle because of a relentless, long and heavy flow, you are not alone. In fact, more than 1 in 5 women experience a persistent and abnormal menstrual flow every month, a condition known as menorrhagia.
Is My Period Normal?
Each month, as a woman’s body prepares itself for a possible pregnancy, the hormone levels estrogen and progesterone rise thus thickening the uterine lining in order to protect the egg released by the ovaries. If fertilization does not occur, a woman will shed this lining which will be visible as blood indicating the start of her period.
As the time nears for a woman to have her period, those suffering from menorrhagia will dread the days leading to the very first sign of blood that will eventually appear. A normal period is usually marked with less than 10 tablespoons of blood lost and a manageable flow for up to 4-7 days. When a woman has a consistently long and heavy period every month—severe enough to cause nausea, fatigue, moodiness, or a complete interruption of daily life, it might be time to check into a menorrhagia treatment in order to resolve the problem.
Curing Heavy Periods
Endometrial ablation is one such menorrhagia treatment procedure that can radically improve the symptoms associated with a prolonged and unrelenting menstrual flow. During the procedure, the endometrial lining is removed either by using freezing temperatures or a heated fluid. The removal of the lining, in essence, prevents the flow of blood to occur.
According to Dr. Jules Monier, a Gynecologist in Plano, Texas, “Endometrial ablation has been around in some form for more than 20 years. The procedure has been perfected and now an unprecedented number of women can enjoy normal menstrual cycles with a much lighter flow accompied by the usual, mild symptoms associated with having an average period.”
The NovaSure® method, an approved endometrial ablation procedure designed specifically as a menorrhagia treatment option over more drastic procedures such as a hysterectomy, uses radio frequency energy to permanently remove the lining of the uterus, which reduces, or eliminates, future bleeding. The procedure, which is carried out under local anesthesia, usually takes under an hour to complete and is typically performed either in the office on an out-patient basis or in a hospital as a day surgery procedure.
Dr. Jules Monier performs the procedure in his Plano, Texas office on a routine basis and consistently receives satisfactory feedback from the patients who have opted to have the treatment. “More than half of my patients experience a total absence of a period after the procedure is performed. Most others see a significant improvement in their menstrual flow and the symptoms that follow. I like to refer to the procedure as it’s like having a hysterectomy without having a hysterectomy.”
For the women that have visited this Plano, Texas office and the thousands of others who have undergone the NovaSure® procedure, 97% say they would recommend the treatment to their friends.
Who is the right candidate for this procedure?
Although the chances for pregnancy reduce greatly after the NovaSure® endometrial ablation procedure has been performed, it is still possible to become pregnant. Any woman who has completed child-bearing or who is menopausal can be a candidate for the treatment. Prior to performing the NovaSure® method, your gynecologist will do a sonogram and in some cases, an endometrial biopsy to ensure there is not another underlying condition present. Light cramping and bleeding may occur in the days or weeks following the procedure but will then disappear allowing the majority of women to enjoy either a normal or an absent menstrual flow.
To learn more about what may be causing you to have a consistently heavy period and to look at the treatments that are available, such as the NovaSure® method, be sure to discuss all of your options with your gynecologist.
About the Author:
Dr. Jules Monier was interviewed for this article and has been practicing gynecology in the Plano, Texas area for 25 years. He is currently in practice with Women’s Specialists of Plano. http://www.obgynplano.com/
Kristy Theis is a Plano, Texas-based communications freelance writer specializing in b2b, consumer and vertical trade copy suitable for both print and Internet. She has over 14 years experience in the fields of marketing, PR and copywriting and currently serves as the content editor for emedicalmedia.com.
Understanding Uterine Fibroids
Author: Dr Daryl Greebon
Understanding Uterine Fibroids
Many women experience these non-cancerous tumors, which can require hysterectomies
A lot of women wonder just exactly what uterine fibroids are. They’re usually non-cancerous tumors that develop within the uterus, and 15-20 percent of women in their reproductive years and 30-40 percent of women older than 30 may suffer from uterine fibroids.
Why should women know about fibroids?
Uterine fibroids are the most prevalent pelvic tumor, but the cause of uterine fibroid tumors is unknown. Not all women with fibroids experience symptoms; however some women ache and have significant menstrual bleeding. In addition, fibroids can place pressure on the bladder, triggering frequent urination.
Fibroids may grow as a single growth or in groups. Fibroids vary in size from very small to eight inches in diameter. The growth of a fibroid typically depends on the hormone estrogen. Once a woman develops a fibroid, the fibroid usually continues to grow throughout her menstruation years.
Women who do not experience symptoms associated with their fibroids may not require treatment. Fibroids may even shrink after menopause, but if heavy bleeding or pain occurs, a hysterectomy may be required. Uterine fibroids are the main reason hysterectomies are performed.
What is a hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy involves surgically removing the uterus, and sometimes the cervix and/or ovaries and fallopian tubes are also removed.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, after cesarean section, hysterectomy is the second most frequently performed major surgical procedure for women of reproductive age in the United States. Approximately 600,000 hysterectomies are performed annually in the U.S., and an estimated 20 million U.S. women have had a hysterectomy.
Although some women are wary of having surgery to relieve symptoms because of the down time they may experience, new technology is available that enables the removal of uterine fibroids and hysterectomies to be performed less invasively, leading to shorter hospital stays. For hysterectomies that may be difficult to perform as a vaginal procedure and would otherwise require an abdominal hysterectomy, the “da Vinci® Surgical System” offers an alternative.
This new robotic technology offers numerous potential benefits over traditional surgery, including less pain and scarring, less risk of infection, and faster recovery. It also may decrease the risk of blood loss that can occur during a hysterectomy. This new technology is available to Collin County and other area residents at Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano, located near President George Bush Turnpike and Preston Road.
About the Author:
A member of the Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano medical staff, Daryl Greebon, M.D., gynecologist, graduated from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School. He went on to serve his internship and residency at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Dr. Greebon is a board certified OBGYN practicing with Women’s Specialists of Plano. www.obgynplano.com