Permanent Birth Control: Comparing Essure and Tubal Litigation

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When you feel your childbearing days are in the past or your family is complete, permanent birth control might be the right choice for you. There are currently two popular methods that women choose: Essure or tubal ligation. While both options have high percentages of success, they are quite different.

Essure is a non-surgical procedure in which a doctor places a soft, flexible insert into each of the woman’s fallopian tubes. Because the inserts are placed through the vagina and cervix, no incisions are needed. Once the inserts have been in place for three months, a natural barrier forms around the Essure inserts that prevent the sperm from reaching the eggs.

Because the barrier takes three months to form, a supplemental birth control is recommend to prevent an unplanned pregnancy. After the first three months pass, the doctor will perform a test that uses contract dye and an x-ray to ensure that the procedure has blocked the fallopian tubes as planned, and a pregnancy is unlikely.

In addition to the procedure being nonsurgical, there are additional benefits to Essure. Women can usually go home within less than an hour of the procedure, and are back to their normal everyday activities in day or two. The inserts are also non-hormonal, so they should not alter a woman’s natural balance. Most importantly for those considering permanent birth control, Essure has been proven to be over 99% effective in a five-year clinical study.

The second option is tubal ligation, or in informal language, having your tubes tied. Unlike Essure, this is a surgical procedure where a doctor ties, block, or cuts the fallopian tubes. This prevents the eggs from leaving the ovaries and having the potential of becoming fertilized.

Tubal ligation can use a laparoscopy with one or two small incisions in the abdomen. If a woman chooses to have the procedure following childbirth, the tubes sit higher after delivery and the incision is made below the navel. These procedures are completed using a general anesthetic or a regional anesthetic, like an epidural.

Additionally, the tubal ligation procedure has several benefits of its own. Unlike the implants, no supplemental birth control is needed following the surgery. Additionally, only five in one thousand women experienced pregnancy within a year of choosing this option.

Both permanent birth control methods provide lasting protection against an accidental or unplanned pregnancy. If you have decided the time is right, consult your doctor to see which option is best suited for your body and your life.

 

Screenings to Detect Breast Cancer Early

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While modern day science and medicine have yet to confirm what definitively causes the cancers women are prone to face, they have come a long way in detecting signs early enough to provide treatment. In addition to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, women can have their doctors perform annual cancer screenings. These procedures may find signs of cancer early and allow doctors to treat the affected cells. Read more »

Testing for Cervical Cancer

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Cervical cancer occurs when cancerous tissues form inside the cervix. The cervix is the organ that joins a woman’s vagina and her uterus. This type of cancer is slow growing and can be challenging to diagnose because symptoms are not always visible. Cervical cancer is most always caused by HPV, which is the human papilloma virus. While cervical cancer sounds very scary, and it should certainly be a serious consideration, it is also the easiest cancer to prevent in females.  Read more »

Three Ways to Prevent HPV

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HPV is a current buzzword that has been stirring up concerns for the last 15 years. Human Papillomavirus is transferred through skin-to-skin contact and is the most prevalent sexually transmitted disease today. In fact, at least 50% of sexually active people will contract HPV at some point in their lifetime. Read more »

Four Common Concerns Many Women Have About Breastfeeding

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After a woman gives birth she is posed with one of the biggest decisions of her life – whether or not to breast-feed. There are many myths associated with breastfeeding that detract many new mothers from doing so. However, according to modern-day medicine most of those theories are, in fact, only myths. Here are some of the most common concerns to consider in this decision:  Read more »

Common Steps to Prevent UTIs

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Any woman who has suffered from a urinary tract infection, often known as a UTI, understands that it can completely derail any plans. The truth is that UTIs are preventable. By maintaining healthy habits, women can have confidence in their flow and comfort. Read more »

Common Concerns About HPV

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The Human Papillomavirus, commonly referred to as HPV, has become a widespread concern for women over the last fifteen years. Thanks to developments in modern medicine we also know that this virus can lead to other complications such as herpes, genital warts and several types of cancer. Also, we now know that this virus is very common. Read more »

Why Get an Ultrasound?

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The ultrasound has long been used as the primary method of monitoring and examining a fetus. It is safe, non-invasive, and incredibly beneficial. It is an indispensable tool for virtually every OB/GYN and plays a crucial role in caring for virtually every pregnant woman.

Confirm Pregnancy and Determine Gestational Age

One of the primary reasons for an early ultrasound is to confirm that a woman is indeed pregnant. An ultrasound is a fast and effective way to rule out a false pregnancy and to confirm that there is, in fact, a fetus present. It is also an effective tool for the skilled OB/GYN to determine gestational age, or how old the fetus is, as well as to give a good estimate of fetal size.

Check for Abnormalities and Multiple Fetuses

There are many abnormalities that can show up on a simple ultrasound, even during the first trimester. First trimester ultrasounds are capable of identifying problems such as a missing fetal nasal bone and can even detect Down Syndrome. Ultrasounds are also used to identify when a multiple pregnancy has occurred, or when the mother is carrying more than one fetus.

Identify Gender

Yet another reason your OB/GYN will perform an ultrasound is to identify the gender of your baby. You can always opt to be kept out of the loop, but your doctor will be able to tell whether you are having a boy or a girl based on what he or she sees on the ultrasound screen.

There are many different reasons to have a prenatal ultrasound, but the biggest is to ensure that your baby is healthy and is developing properly. Your OB/GYN can tell a lot from what he or she sees on the ultrasound screen, and regular ultrasounds can be the best way to keep an eye on your baby’s development and to catch any potential problems as quickly as possible. It is recommended that all pregnant women have regular ultrasound examinations, and doing so can be one of the best choices that you can make for both your pregnancy and for your baby.

Trying to Get Pregnant? Follow These 5 Tips First!

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Are you trying to get pregnant? If so, you want to make sure that you are making healthy choices. In this article, we will look at five very important tips that can help you have a healthier pregnancy.

Avoid Chemicals, Toxins, and Pesticides

This means working to avoid contact with things like cat feces and other substances or materials, whether at home or at work, that could cause infection. It can even be a good idea to start eating organic foods to avoid pesticides and other chemicals found in processed and chemically-grown foods.

Limit or Eliminate Medications

Many medications can pass through the placenta and into your baby. Because of this, it is critical that you speak with your doctor about any medications, including over the counter medications that you take. You want to ensure that you are not endangering your baby and this may mean limiting or even eliminating the use of certain medications.

Take Folic Acid

All women should be taking folic acid on a daily basis, but this takes on a new importance when you are trying to get pregnant. Folic acid can help reduce the risk of many birth defects, including such things as spina bifida. Speak with your doctor to find out how much folic acid you need to be taking. There are some prescription prenatal vitamins that offer higher levels of folic acid.

Control Medical Conditions

Some medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, and even poor oral health, can be affected by pregnancy or can affect your pregnancy. It is important that you get medical conditions under control before trying to become pregnant. It is safer for both your health and the health of your baby.

Quit Smoking and Drinking

Drinking and smoking are both bad for your health, but you have likely already heard that countless times. What you may not know is that they can be disastrous or even deadly for your baby. If you are trying to get pregnant, it is imperative that you quit smoking and drinking as soon as possible if you engage in these activities.

Better prenatal health means a better chance for a successful, smooth pregnancy. Eating right and following a healthy lifestyle regimen can really go a long way towards improving a pregnancy. The rules outlined here will help you make sure you get started on the right foot.

The 6 Types of Ultrasounds

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While all ultrasounds work in virtually the same way, there are actually some major differences between the six different ultrasound types. In this article, we will take a look at the different types of ultrasounds.

Doppler Ultrasounds

Doppler ultrasounds are used to measure both the direction and the speed of blood cells while they move through the arteries and veins in the body. These images can help a doctor find problems with blood flow, as well as congenital malformations. It is becoming increasingly used in obstetrics to help assess and monitor the well being of the fetus as well as in fetal heart rate detectors.

Obstetric Ultrasounds

These noninvasive ultrasounds are a cost effective way of examining the uterus, ovaries, and fetus. While often used for confirming early pregnancies and for monitoring fetal size, age, and weight, they are also used in cases of vaginal bleeding as well as to find or diagnose problems with the ovaries, uterus, or fallopian tubes.

3D and 4D Ultrasounds

3D ultrasounds provide a static 3D image of the fetus or whatever is being scanned, while a 4D ultrasound can also record movement of a 3D fetus or body part. 4D ultrasounds allow 3D images to be seen in motion, allowing them to show a baby’s movements even before it is born. While these ultrasounds are not yet ready to replace traditional 2D scans as diagnostic tools, there is certainly much hope for what the future will bring for this technology.

Echocardiogram

An echocardiogram is a type of ultrasound that examines the heart, the way the valves function, and the way blood flows through the heart. It can also determine how much blood is pumping through the heart and examine the motion of the heart walls. There are numerous different types of echocardiogram, but all are used for monitoring the function and movement of the heart.

Carotid Ultrasound

The last type of ultrasound is the carotid ultrasound. These ultrasounds are conducted in order to view the carotid arteries found on each side of a person’s neck. These arteries are responsible for supplying the brain with blood. These ultrasounds are often performed after a transient ischemic attack or a stroke.

As you can see, there are many different types of ultrasounds. Your doctor will know which one is best for your specific case and needs. Ultrasounds are incredibly safe and can be very critical diagnostic tools, especially for OB/GYNs.