We strive to create individualized treatment plans for each of our patients as each person has a unique history and unique needs. Some of our services include:
1 in every 10 women of child-bearing age has endometriosis, which is the overgrowth of uterine lining beyond the uterus. Our practice offers treatment options for those who struggle with this condition.
What is Endometriosis?
It is a common gynecological condition, in which the tissue that lines your uterus, known as the endometrium, grows outside of your uterine cavity. It can grow on other parts of the reproductive system such as the ovaries or spread to the bowels and tissues lining your pelvis. It is unusual for the tissue to spread beyond the pelvic region, but it is not impossible. Endometrial tissue outside of the uterus is known as an endometrial implant.
Symptoms of endometriosis vary. Some women may experience mild symptoms while others may have more moderate to severe experiences. The severity of your pain does not indicate the degree or stage of your condition. Some women with severe cases only experience minimal symptoms.
The most common symptom of endometriosis is pelvic pain, but you may also experience:
- Painful periods
- Pain in the lower abdomen before and during menstruation
- Cramps one or two weeks around menstruation
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Bleeding between periods
- Pain following intercourse
- Discomfort with bowel movements
- Lower back pain at any time during your menstrual cycle
You may also experience no symptoms, which is why it is important to attend routine gynecological exams. This will allow your doctor to note any changes. If suspected, your doctor may recommend laparoscopy as it is the only certain method of identifying endometriosis by viewing it directly. A tissue sample will be sent and analyzed by the lab to confirm the diagnosis.
There is no cure, so treatment focuses on the management of symptoms and improving your quality of life. Everyone reacts differently, so we will work with you to design the right treatment plan for your condition.
Pain medication can be used to help manage some symptoms of pain and inflammation. Hormonal therapies can also relieve pain and stop the progression of endometriosis in some cases. By blocking the natural production of estrogen, endometriosis can be slowed but may also bring on early symptoms of menopause.
Laparoscopy, a minimally invasive surgery, may also be used to remove endometrial tissue from various sites. In severe cases and if your condition does not respond to other forms of treatment, your doctor may suggest undergoing a hysterectomy. A hysterectomy removes the uterus, cervix, and ovaries as well as any visible implant lesions. Undergoing this surgery means you will be unable to become pregnant.
For women who are sexually active but do not wish to become pregnant, there are several birth control options, or contraceptives, available that are safe and effective. We will work with you to find a form of birth control that is right for you and your lifestyle.
As mentioned above there are various kinds of birth control:
These methods of birth control include male and female condoms as well as diaphragms, or cups, that work to prevent sperm from entering the uterus.
Hormonal birth controls may come in the form of pills, patches, shots, or implants. These methods alter your hormone production to either prevent your body from releasing eggs or to thicken cervical mucus so that fertilization does not occur.
These birth control methods involve undergoing minor procedures to prevent pregnancy. An IUD, or intrauterine contraception device, is a device placed within the uterus and works to decrease ovulation, thicken cervical mucus, or block sperm from entering the uterus.
Another form of procedural birth control is tubal ligation. This form is permanent as the Fallopian tubes are cut, clamped, or burned off. This prevents eggs from traveling to the uterus or sperm from reaching the eggs.
Abstinence, or refraining from sexual intercourse, is the only means of birth control that is proven to prevent pregnancy 100%. However, many of the birth control options listed above have excellent rates with less than 1% of women becoming pregnant when using birth control correctly.
Risks and Benefits
Every contraceptive has its own risk and benefits. It is important that you make this decision together with your doctor so that you are aware of all your options and choose the one that is right for you.
If you are sexually active, specifically with multiple partners, it is important to use protection and be tested for STIs, also known as STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases).
It is important to note that you may have an STI without experiencing any symptoms, so maintaining screenings are essential to preventing the spread of disease unknowingly.
The type and frequency of STI screenings needed vary depending on your age, risk factors, and sexual history. Some STIs such as chlamydia and gonorrhea require annual testing for those individuals who:
- Are female, under the age of 25, and sexually active.
- Are female, over the age of 25, and sexually active with multiple or new partners.
- Are male and sexually active with other males.
- Have tested positive for HIV.
- Have been forced to be sexually active against their will.
Other STIs such as HIV, syphilis, and hepatitis may require less frequent testing for those individuals who aren’t at an increased risk of infection.
Talk to your doctor about your specific circumstance so we can better recommend a screening schedule to keep you in optimal health. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today at (303) 755-0120.
Weight loss is something with which millions of people struggle. As you know, your weight doesn’t just contribute to your physical appearance. Your weight and the amount of fat in your body can help or hurt your body by contributing to either a healthy physique or lead to medical issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. Weight loss is not just about restricting calories, which is what most people try to do. Weight loss is really about correcting your nutrition, managing your stress, and for some, working with or around chronic diseases and medical conditions.
At Center for Women's Health, we are proud to help our patients who are going through menopause.
Most women experience menopause naturally after the age of 45, though symptoms can begin earlier. During this time, women typically stop having a monthly period as the ovaries stop producing progesterone and estrogen.
Common symptoms women experience during menopause include hot flashes, vaginal dryness, difficulty sleeping, mood swings, hair loss on the head and growth on the face, and difficulty focusing.
We know that these changes to the body can be difficult to navigate, and we are here for our patients who are learning to cope with menopausal symptoms. We take patient health and wellbeing very seriously, and we will carefully consider your medical and family history before recommending treatment for your symptoms. Be sure to let your doctor know if you are at an increased risk for osteoporosis, breast cancer, or heart disease, as these are important considerations when creating a treatment plan.
If you are experiencing symptoms associated with menopause, contact us today at (303) 755-0120. We would love to help you!