Gynecology

 Effingham Obstetrics and Gynecology Associates provides women with compassionate health care. We are here for you at every stage of life. Our Physicians have received advanced training and are held to higher medical standards for their specialty. Listed below are some of the services we provide:

  

  

Routine Gynecological Exams Incontinence Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Interstitial Cystitis Treatment Breast Exams

Urodynamics

LEEP Colposcopy 

Cryotherapy 

Ovulation Induction Osteoperosis 

Menopause 

Infertility Evaluation Pelvic Pain 

Contraception

Pre-Conceptual Counseling Fibroids

STD Screening

Post Menopausal Bleeding Ovarian Cysts

Hormone Imbalance

Abnormal Bleeding Endometriosis

Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy(BHRT)

Pelvic Organ Prolapse Vaginal Pessaries

 

 

Routine Gynecological Exam

 

 

All women age 21 or older (and all sexually active women) should have an gynecological exam which includes a pelvic exam and may include a Pap smear.

Incontinence

 

Millions of women experience involuntary loss of urine called urinary incontinence (UI). Some women may lose a few drops of urine while running or coughing. Others may feel a strong, sudden urge to urinate just before losing a large amount of urine.  

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

 

Polycystic (pah-lee-SIS-tik) ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a health problem that can affect a woman's menstrual cycle, ability to have children, hormones, heart, blood vessels, and appearance. About one in ten women of childbearing age has PCOS. It can occur in girls as young as 11 years old. PCOS is the most common cause of female infertility (not being able to get pregnant).

Interstitial Cystitis Treatment

 

Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a condition that results in recurring discomfort or pain in the bladder and the surrounding pelvic region. The symptoms vary from case to case and even in the same individual. People may experience mild discomfort, pressure, tenderness, or intense pain in the bladder and pelvic area. Symptoms may include an urgent need to urinate, a frequent need to urinate, or a combination of these symptoms. Pain may change in intensity as the bladder fills with urine or as it empties. Women’s symptoms often get worse during menstruation. They may sometimes experience pain during vaginal intercourse.

Breast Exam

 

A clinical breast examination (CBE) is a physical examination of the breast done by a health professional. Clinical breast examinations are used along with mammograms to check women for breast cancer. Clinical breast examinations are also used to check for other breast problems.

 

Urodynamics

 

Urodynamics is the investigation of functional disorders of the lower urinary tract, i.e. the bladder and the urethra. Symptoms reported by the patient are often an unreliable guide to the underlying dysfunction of the lower urinary tract. The purpose of urodynamics is to provide objective confirmation of the pathology that a patient's symptoms would suggest.

LEEP

 

If your doctor has told you that you need to have a LEEP procedure, it's because your annual Pap smear indicated the presence of abnormal cervical cells, or cervical dysplasia. While the loop electrosurgical excision procedure, or LEEP procedure, may make you wonder if your doctor wants you to jump. The LEEP procedure has nothing to do with jumping. The LEEP procedure is one of several procedures your doctor has available to help diagnose and treat abnormal cervical cells.

Colposcopy

 

One of the most frightening times in a woman's life is when the gynecologist calls and says her Pap smear results are abnormal. Although you might think an abnormal Pap smear means you have cervical cancer, the fact is that the majority of abnormal Pap smears are not caused by cervical cancer. The more likely cause of abnormal Pap smear results is inflammation or a vaginal infection. Because the Pap smear is a screening tool and not a diagnostic tool, your gynecologist may want to take a closer look at your cervix to determine the cause of your abnormal Pap smear results. The tool your gynecologist uses to get a closer look at your cervix is called a colposcope.

 

Cryotherapy

 

Cryotherapy, also called cryosurgery, cryoablation or targeted cryoablation therapy, is a minimally invasive treatment that uses extreme cold to freeze and destroy diseased tissue, including cancer cells.

Ovulation Induction

 

Ovulation induction medications, often referred to as fertility drugs, are used to stimulate the follicles in your ovaries resulting in the production of multiple eggs in one cycle. The medications also control the time that you release the eggs, or ovulate, so sexual intercourse, intrauterine inseminations, and in vitro fertilization procedures can be scheduled at the most likely time to achieve pregnancy.

Infertility Evaluation

 

It is important that both partners be tested initially to carefully assess the extent of the fertility problems. The basic infertility evaluation for women includes a history and a physical examination. Additional testing to further refine the diagnosis is often completed as well. Approximately 45% of couples will have associated male infertility. It is for this reason that evaluation and treatment of the male is critical to a thorough comprehensive program for the infertile couple.

Pre-Conceptual Counseling

 

Preconception testing benefits women being treated for a condition such as sickle cell anemia, hypertension, heart disease or diabetes that may cause a high-risk pregnancy. Screening and preconception care can minimize complications for mother and fetus later on. Women seeking preconception counseling not because of special issues but in order to be well-prepared for pregnancy are also welcome.

Post Menopausal Bleeding

 

Most of the time there is a reasonable explanation for a post-menopausal bleeding event, but any kind of irregular bleeding — particularly if you haven’t had a natural period for over a year — warrants investigation by your healthcare provider — just to rule out anything serious. Like so many symptoms that occur at this time of life, post-menopausal bleeding is often related to the same lifestyle issues that contribute to weight gain, emotional stress, and hormonal imbalance.

Osteoporosis

 

Osteoporosis is a condition characterized by the loss of the normal density of bone, resulting in fragile bone. Osteoporosis leads to literally abnormally porous bone that is more compressible like a sponge, than dense like a brick. This disorder of the skeleton weakens the bone causing an increase in the risk for breaking bones (bone fracture).

Menopause

 

Menopause is the time in a woman's life when her period stops. It is a normal change in a woman's body. A woman has reached menopause when she has not had a period for 12 months in a row (and there are no other causes, such as pregnancy or illness, for this change). Menopause is sometimes called, "the change of life." Leading up to menopause, a woman’s body slowly makes less and less of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. This change often happens between the ages of 45 and 55 years old.

Pelvic Pain

 

Pelvic pain can be caused by an infection or inflammation. An infection doesn't have to affect the reproductive organs to cause pelvic pain. Pain caused by the bladder, bowel, or appendix can produce pain in the pelvic region; diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome, kidney or bladder stones, as well as muscle spasms or strains are some examples of non-reproductive causes of pelvic or lower abdominal pain. Other causes of pelvic pain can include pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), vaginal infections, vaginitis, and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). All of these require a visit to your healthcare provider who will take a medical history, and do a physical exam which may include diagnostic testing.

 

Hormone Imbalance

 

It’s something quite common during perimenopause (and later, menopause itself). Your hot flashes, night sweats, irregular periods, cravings for sweets, vaginal dryness and even insomnia are simple signs that you have underlying hormonal imbalances or metabolic damage due to stress, poor nutrition and other factors.

Contraception

 

Choosing a birth control method is one of the most personal health care decisions a woman makes. In nearly four decades of childbearing years, your need for birth control will most likely change many times. But at each life stage, you can make informed decisions by learning about all your contraceptive options and selecting one or more that best fits your reproductive health needs.

STD Screening

 

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infections that are passed from one person to another by sexual contact. Sexual contact includes vaginal intercourse, anal intercourse, oral-genital contact, skin-to-skin contact in the genital area, kissing, and the use of sex toys, such as vibrators. The diseases usually affect the genital area including the penis or vagina. STD testing is done in many different ways. When you go to a doctor to be tested for STDs, they should start by asking you questions about your risk factors. After assessing what diseases you are at risk for, they will test you for those conditions.

 

Endometriosis

 

Endometriosis is a common health problem in women. It gets its name from the word endometrium, the tissue that lines the uterus (womb). In women with this problem, tissue that looks and acts like the lining of the uterus grows outside of the uterus in other areas. These areas can be called growths, tumors, implants, lesions, or nodules.

 

Fibroids

 

A uterine fibroid is the most common benign (not cancerous) tumor of a woman's uterus (womb). Fibroids develop with the uterine wall or attach to it. They may grow as a single tumor or in clusters. Uterine fibroids can cause excessive menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, and frequent urination

Ovarian Cysts

 

Ovarian cysts are small fluid-filled sacs that develop in a woman's ovaries. Most cysts are harmless, but some may cause problems such as rupturing, bleeding, or pain; and surgery may be required to remove the cyst(s). It is important to understand how these cysts may form.

Abnormal Bleeding

 

A normal menstrual period lasts from 2 to 7 days. The normal cycle patterns can range from 21 to 35 days. When bleeding occurs that is not part of the regular cycle; periods are longer or heavier than normal; occurs between periods; time between periods is longer than normal; or there is an absence of periods, this is called abnormal or irregular uterine bleeding.

 

Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT)

 

BHRT, sometimes referred to as natural hormones, are used to treat menopause symptoms, perimenopause, and post-menopause.  Bio-identcal hormones are those that are molecularly identical to the hormones that are produced in the body.  The hormones are chemicals that are derived from the sources of yam or soybean.  Steroids and hormones are taken from animals and plants then altered to be identical in molecular structure.  The steroids and hormones are then formed as a cream, oral, suppository or injections so the body can absorb them quickly.

Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP)

 

Pelvic organ prolapse is a very common condition, particularly among older women. It's estimated that half of women who have children will experience some form of prolapse in later life, but because many women don't seek help from their doctor the actual number of women affected by prolapse is unknown. Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when the pelvic floor muscles become weak or damaged and can no longer support the pelvic organs. The womb (uterus) is the only organ that actually falls into the vagina. When the bladder and bowel slip out of place, they push up against the walls of the vagina. While prolapse is not considered a life threatening condition it may cause a great deal of discomfort and distress.  Organs that may be involved in pelvic organ prolapse include the:

  • Bladder. Prolapse of the bladder into the vagina is called cystocele.
  • Urethra. Prolapse of the urethra is called urethrocele.
  • Uterus. Prolapse of the uterus is called uterine prolapse.
  • Vagina. Prolapse of the vagina is called vaginal vault prolapse.
  • Small bowel (intestine). Prolapse of the small bowel is called enterocele.
  • Rectum. Prolapse of the rectum is called rectocele.

There are non-surgical and surgical methods used to correct prolapsed.  Non-surgical methods include the use of Pessary devices and Kegel exercises. 

Vaginal Pessaries

 

Pessaries are used as a nonsurgical approach to the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse.  A vaginal pessary is a removable device placed into the vagina. It is designed to support areas of pelvic organ prolapse. There are a variety of pessaries available, made of rubber, plastic, or silicone-based material. Among common types of pessaries are the ring, donut, and Gellhorn.  Your health professional will fit your pessary to hold the pelvic organs in position without causing discomfort. Pessaries come in a variety of sizes and should be fitted carefully.