An Obstetrician goes through four years of specialized training in areas dealing with preconceptional health, pregnancy, labor and childbirth, postpartum care, genetics, genetic counseling and prenatal diagnosis. Some Obstetricians specialize in the following:
Maternal Fetal Medicine: Care of high-risk pregnancies
Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility: Care of women who have hormonal or infertility problems.
Becoming pregnant is a major event in your life. Planning ahead and making wise choices will benefit both your and your baby. If you are planning to become pregnant, you need to inform your physician. Some women have special medical problems, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart problems. These conditions could increase risks for you and your baby. You also need to let your physician know all the medications you are taking, either prescribed or over the counter. Some can cause harm to your baby. Meet with your physician to discuss your current treatments.
When you meet with your Obstetrician, he/she will ask you detailed questions about your history. Here are some things that might be asked:
Becoming a parent is a major commitment filled with challenges, rewards and choices.
During pregnancy your obstetrician performs certain lab tests. Some of these tests may be performed more than once.
Every pregnancy and every woman is different, so not all of these tests may be performed. Discuss your options with your Obstetrician.
Gynecology is part of the specialty of Obstetrics and Gynecology and covers women’s general health, care of reproductive organs, breasts and sexual function. A gynecologist is involved in the management of hormonal disorders, treatment of infections and is trained in surgery to correct or treat pelvic organ and urinary tract problems, which includes cancer of the reproductive organs. During their four years of training, the gynecologist learns the aspects of preventative care and overall health, not just those of the reproductive system. Two subspecialties that require three additional years of training are:
Gynecological Oncology: care of women with cancers of the reproductive system
Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery: care of urinary tract dysfunction and disorder stemming from loss of support of pelvic structures.
Women should have their first routine gynecological examination if they are over 18. However, women and girls of any age need to visit their physician if they notice irregularities in their breasts, genitalia or menstrual cycles, if they are sexually active or think they may be pregnant.
The standard gynecological examination includes but is not limited to:
The gynecological oncologist specializes in the treatment of women with cancer of the reproduction system. Some cancers of the reproductive system are:
The role of the gynecologist is emerging as that of a total women’s health provider who can provide you with routine health examinations, as well as specialized care.