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Notes on Women's Health

Notes on Women's Health

da Vinci Surgery and Hysterectomy

In my last blog, I mentioned that da Vinci surgery provides precision that’s crucial when working in close proximity to delicate organs like the bladder. In addition, the camera technology provides a great deal of detail. If you’re facing the prospect of surgery and you think of the kind of surgery you’d prefer to have, hopefully words like detail and precision are ones that come to mind.

This combination of detail and precision makes da Vinci very well suited for a variety of surgery types and procedures, including several that I do regularly as part of my medical practice. For this blog I thought I’d talk about da Vinci surgery and hysterectomy. Read More

What is da Vinci surgery?

Leonardo da Vinci

As I mentioned in my last blog, the da Vinci Surgical System uses a computerized interface between the surgeon and the instruments to conduct surgical procedures. The name “da Vinci” was chosen for the system because legendary artist and inventor Leonardo da Vinci is credited with designing the first robot. It’s also a fitting name because Leonardo da Vinci used anatomical accuracy and three-dimensional details to lend realism to his art.

For many people, the use of robots or robotic tools in surgery raises some concerns. One commonly accepted definition of a robot is “an automatically guided machine, able to do tasks on its own.” This definition is a bit vague, but experts generally agree that robots tend to do some or all of the following: move around, operate a mechanical limb, sense and manipulate their environment, and exhibit intelligent behavior, especially behavior which mimics humans or other animals.

Given only those definitions to describe da Vinci technology, I’d be concerned too. To be honest, I’ve avoided using the word “robot” or “robotic” to describe the da Vinci Surgical System in my website. It’s not really an accurate term, since the da Vinci system is directed and controlled by a human being Read More

da Vinci surgery: your questions answered

As one of the first doctors in Fairfield County, Connecticut to be certified in da Vinci surgery, I’m asked a lot of questions about the technology and how it can be used to treat endometriosis, uterine fibroids, pelvic organ prolapse and other conditions. Since I’ve seen so much interest and heard so many questions about da Vinci surgery, I thought it would be helpful to use this blog to provide information to women who may be considering or facing surgery.

In the next few weeks, I’ll be posting a series of blogs about da Vinci surgery and how I use it in my own medical practice. If you have any experiences you’d like to share, please feel free to comment. Read More

Do You Forget To Take Your Birth Control Pills?

If you occasionally forget to take your birth control pills, you should consider using the Nuvaring. The Nuvaring is a soft flexible plastic ring that is inserted into your vagina and removed after 3 weeks. A new ring is then inserted one week later. Just like birth control pills, the Nuvaring contains a combination of estrogen and progesterone. Instead of having to take a birth control pill every day, the Nuvaring prevents pregnancy for a full four weeks by slowly and continuously releasing estrogen and progesterone into your body every day for 21 days. Since it contains the same types of hormones that birth control pills contain, using the Nuvaring has the same risks and benefits for your health. As compared to birth control pills, the major advantage of the Nuvaring is the convenience factor. Read More

Announcement of Risks and Prevention of Swine Flu H1N1 During Pregnancy

H1N1 FLU ANNOUNCEMENT

Please listen to this important announcement about the risks and prevention of the Swine Flu H1N1 Virus for pregnant women.

Prenatal Care Visits Week-by-Week

Stamford Town Center Hosts daVinci Robotic Surgical System Demonstration

Where: Stamford Town Center
What: daVinci Robotic Surgical System Demonstrationon
When: Saturday, September 26 from 1-7pm

For anyone interested in learning more about DaVinci surgery for the treatment  of women’s health conditions, I urge you to stop by The Stamford Town Center this Saturday between 1 and 7pm.  I will be demonstrating the DaVinci surgical system along with Urologist, Jonathan E. Bernie, M.D., Chief of Robotic Surgery at Norwalk Hospital. Read More

Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy For Menopause

The truth is that there is no scientific evidence supporting the safety or effectiveness of compounded bioidentical hormones. There is also no scientific support for the use of hormone assays from salivary, urine or blood for the adjustment of hormone replacement dosage.

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Patients occasionally ask me about the safety and effectiveness of  Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (“BHRT”). Read More

Advice from the Center for Disease Control Concerning Pregnant Women with H1N1 Influenza

Because pregnant women with influenza are at higher than average risk of complications from influenza, the Center for Disease Control  (CDC) has recommended prompt treatment for pregnant women with influenza-like symptoms. The CDC recommends that doctors and patients should not wait for definitive lab reports before starting antiviral medications because the best response to antiviral medications is seen when treatment is initiated early in the course of the illness.  Pregnant women who have been exposed to the  H1N1 influenza strain by a family member or other close contact should also be treated promptly even if they do not have any symptoms- this is called chemoprophylaxis.

Pregnant women should see their obstetrician promptly or go to the emergency room if respiratory illness is experienced. The symptoms of influenza include cough, sore throat, rhinorrhea, fever, body aches, headache, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea. To prevent influenza remember to get your yearly influenza vaccine,  avoid people with known respiratory illnesses, wash your hands regularly and cover your cough.

For more detailed information, see the CDC webpage on pregnant women with H1N1 influenza.

Prenatal Care Visits Week-by-Week

LAPAROSCOPIC VS. VAGINAL HYSTERECTOMY – How Do the Procedures Compare?

A recent medical study found that women who had a laparoscopic hysterectomy generally experienced less blood loss, less pain and a shorter hospital stay compared with women who had a vaginal hysterectomy.

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Hysterectomy, or surgical removal of the uterus, can be performed in different ways, including open surgery, laparoscopically, and vaginally. Open surgery provides the most effective way to ensure complete removal of the reproductive system but requires a wide incision through the abdominal wall. Laparoscopic hysterectomy is a minimally invasive procedure that uses thin, fiber-optic telescopes passed through into the abdomen through small cuts in the abdominal wall. In a vaginal hysterectomy, the surgeon operates entirely through the vagina.

While many tests have compared the safety and effectiveness of open and laparoscopic hysterectomies in recent years, relatively few have compared vaginal and laparoscopic hysterectomies. Read More