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Notes on Women's Health
Notes on Women's Health

Category: Well Women Care

The Baby Blues and Signs of Postpartum Depression

Young mother - postpartum depression signsLife shouldn’t get any better than when you finally have your new baby home with you, right? While the long awaited arrival should make you feel happy and blissful, the truth is that some 9 to 16 percent of women show the signs of postpartum depression after childbirth.*

Many new moms feel guilty if they don’t feel like having their new baby home is the happiest time of their lives. But there shouldn’t be any guilt associated with experiencing postpartum blues (“baby blues”). During pregnancy, levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone are sky-high and after delivering a baby and the placenta, they drastically plummet, triggering the baby blues.  Combine the change in hormones with an exhausting delivery and your new role of caretaker, and it’s no wonder so many moms experience postpartum mood changes.

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Abnormal Bleeding After Menopause: When to be Concerned

Woman on bed complaining of menopause bleeding & cramping You’ve made it through menopause. You’re done with the mood swings and the hot flushes, the fatigue and the cramping. And now, after decades of dealing with regular and irregular uterine bleeding, you’re settling into the latest phase of your body’s development, hopefully with a minimum of fuss. So what does it mean if you start bleeding again? Read More

Causes of Abnormal Bleeding Around Menopause: Navigating the Changes

Mature woman sitting on bed with manopause cramping and abnormal bleedingMenopause is the time in a woman’s life when the ovaries stop producing estrogen. If you’ve gone through 12 consecutive months without a menstrual period, it’s official: you’ve reached menopause. For about 40% of women, that’s all there is to it.

For the other 60% of women, the months or years leading up to menopause can bring a host of symptoms. Brought on by hormonal changes, the symptoms can include insomnia, fatigue, hot flashes, chest pain, cramping, moodiness, vaginal dryness, abdominal weight gain, a rapid or irregular heartbeat, a reduced sex drive, urinary incontinence, and abnormal uterine bleeding — that is, irregular or heavy bleeding. Or both. These changes can bring on confusion and anxiety, especially if you’re not expecting them at this point in your life. Read More

Finding the Right OBGYN – Important Considerations and Questions to Ask Potential Obstetricians

Finding an OBGYN finding OBGYN(obstetrician) to care for you and your baby is a huge decision to make as you start your journey towards parenthood, so it’s important to find the one that is right for you. If your gynecologist also practices obstetrics and you like your relationship, then it may be as simple as asking him or her to care for you during your pregnancy. But if you find yourself needing an obstetrician, you can start by asking one of your healthcare providers to make a recommendation, talk to other moms in your area, or go to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ website to find an CT obgyn in your area.

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Low Libido in Women: What to Do When Your Sex Drive Fades

low libido in womenLow libido: a fact of life for many women

If you’re experiencing low libido, fear not … you’re not alone! In a recent U.S. study of more than 2,000 women between the ages of 30 and 70, more than a third had low sexual desire. It’s one of the most common concerns we hear from our patients. And it’s no wonder: As women navigate their middle years, they often find themselves deep into a long-term relationship, a career, raising teens, and taking care of aging relatives.

All of these situations can cause stress, which can have a negative effect on your sex life. And that’s just for starters. Read More

Your daughter’s all-important first gynecologist appointment

daughters-first-gynecologist-appointment“When should my daughter make her first gynecologist appointment?” is a question our patients often ask during their visits to us, followed by an almost always immediate second question: “What kinds of things do you do to calm her nerves for the first visit?”

The optimum time for a first gynecologist appointment to our office is between the ages 13 and 15. As for the second answer, because it can be scary for your daughter as young girls often feel embarrassed or nervous discussing their bodies, we make the visit as pleasant and comfortable as possible, and consider this a get-to-know-you session, where we begin building relationships and talk about health, education and prevention.

In most cases young girls visit our nurse practitioner Laury Berkwitt, who specializes in women’s health, is a mother of two, and is passionate about caring for young women and adolescents. She knows how to speak to young girls and is able to get them to open up, talk and ask questions. Read More

In the News: AAP Recommends LARCs for Sexually Active Adolescents

garOctober 30, 2014 – Earlier this month, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended that the first-line contraceptive choice for sexually active adolescents is a long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC). This is a new recommendation for the APP, which is an organization of 62,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. Read More

In the News: The Dangers of Power Morcellation for Uterine Fibroid Removal

The FDA speaks out

Earlier this month, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a memorandum that discouraged surgeons from using a common procedure called power morcellation to remove uterine fibroids. Power morcellation uses a medical device to divide uterine fibroids into smaller pieces that can be removed through a small incision in the abdomen, such as during laparoscopic surgery.

Why was the FDA announcement necessary?

New data from the Center for Devices and Radiological Health show that power morcellation can spread undetected cancers more often than previously realized. According to the data, one in 350 women who undergo a hysterectomy to treat fibroids or who have fibroids removed have undiagnosed uterine sarcoma — a type of cancer that can be aggressive. If power morcellation is performed in women with this kind of uterine cancer, the procedure can spread the cancer around the abdomen and pelvis.

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Mammograms: Making Sense of Conflicting News

In the past few months there’s been a lot of conflicting information about mammograms in the press. Not surprisingly, we get asked a lot of questions by our patients: Are mammograms useful? At what age should I start getting tested? What are the risks? What if I test positive?

Recent News: A Quick Summary

A few months ago, there was a cost analysis of whether women should start regular mammograms starting at age 40 or age 50. Why was this a concern? Because the American Cancer Society recommends that women start mammogram screening every year starting when they turn 40, while the U.S. Preventive Service’s Task Force recommends that women get a mammogram every other year starting at age 50.

A few weeks later, a Canadian study reported that mammograms did not reduce breast cancer deaths. This study was criticized by U.S. radiologists as being flawed and misleading.

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Angelina Jolie and the Importance of BRCA1 Testing

angelinacrEarlier this week, Angelina Jolie publicly shared her decision to have a preventive double mastectomy and removal of her ovaries in order to reduce her chances of getting breast cancer and ovarian cancer. According to news reports, Angelina made these decisions after learning that she carried a mutated gene known as BRCA1 which significantly increased her chances of getting breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Angelina’s mother passed away at the age of 56 after a seven-year struggle with cancer. Angelina is in her late 30s.

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