“Dr. Gunter, I think, uh, there’s a fetal skull in the abdomen,” my resident said with that hesitancy that says I want you to tell me I’m wrong. The first time you diagnose something that is very bad you actually hope you are mistaken and want someone more senior to reassure you that you are overreacting and tell you that this is just an odd presentation of something benign. “I’ll be ...

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While sitting in the study lounge of my med school, I had on my computer screen one of our three slides on anencephaly. I was trying to memorize the two key phrases framing the graphic photograph of a stillborn baby with bulging eyes and a cratered head -- “anterior neural tube defect,” and “elevated alpha-fetoprotein.” A third year walked past me and sneaked a glance at my screen. Without faltering ...

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shutterstock_166859618 Every few news cycles placenta-eating seems to make the rounds. I’ve already seen it a couple of times this year, so I figured the Internet is trying to tell me something. Some women, but mostly those who recommend and/or prepare placenta for them, think that ingesting placenta can cure/help postpartum depression and possibly a host of other postpartum ills and issues. Some ...

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Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is becoming a significant problem in women’s health. Between 1 in 10 to 20 women have the condition, although more than 50 percent remain undiagnosed. PCOS is the leading cause of female infertility and women who do become pregnant have higher rates of miscarriage, preterm birth, and gestational diabetes. Women with PCOS have a greater likelihood of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and endometrial cancer than women without ...

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shutterstock_174197693 I hear this fairly often: Women telling me they asked their GYN for an IUD and were told that they couldn’t because they had never had children. Their GYNs are wrong and unfortunately it’s not just a few who think this way. A study from last year tells us that 32 percent of OB/GYNs think that women who have never ...

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shutterstock_266789546 Last night, one of my close and friends told me the story of her recent trip for her annual gynecology appointment. Her longtime gynecologist had retired, and she was meeting her new physician. After taking a history, the first new physician explained to her that since she always had normal Pap smears, including recent ones from the past several years, she ...

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shutterstock_50320798 The scalpel hits the skin immediately, splaying it open with one smooth swipe. Two more swipes through yellow globular fat and I hit the glistening white fascia layer. If this weren't an emergency, I would stop to carefully cauterize the small bleeding blood vessels in the fat layer, but there is no time for that now. I nick the middle of ...

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shutterstock_206493670 A new paper in the journal Lancet Oncology evaluates outcomes after vaccination with Cervarix, which is the HPV vaccine that is effective against the 2 most oncogenic (cancer-causing) strains: HPV 16 and 18. The paper is actually a compilation of results from two studies of Cervarix among women ages 15-25 and now has four years of follow-up data on more ...

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shutterstock_128145248 Currently the HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccines are approved in the United States up to the age of 26. This has nothing to do with safety but due to the fact that the studies submitted to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) involved this age range. The HPV vaccines were primarily studied in women aged 26 years and younger because age ...

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shutterstock_211897159 1. Due to intermittent monitoring versus continuous fetal monitoring which is standard in the hospital, the patient has increased mobility and a wider range of laboring positions/options: sitting, standing, walking, water, birthing balls. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has agreed that there is not a medical benefit to continuous fetal monitoring compared to intermittent monitoring in low-risk women. 2. ...

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