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Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors | Brooklyn Gynecology Services

Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors | Brooklyn Gynecology Services

Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors | Brooklyn Gynecology Services

Ovarian cancer affects the ovaries first. Every woman has two ovaries, one on each side of the uterus. Normally ovaries are about the size of an almond and they produce the eggs, estrogen and progesterone.

Ovarian cancer is usually diagnosed in later stages, when the cancer has already spread within the pelvis or abdomen. At this stage it is very difficult to treat it. The real cause of ovarian cancer is not known. However certain risk factors increase the probability of ovarian cancer. These risk factors include:

  • Age – usually occurs in the ages between 50-60 years. However, ovarian cancer can occur at any age.
  • Inherited gene mutation – breast cancer gene 1 (BRCA1) and breast cancer gene 2 (BRCA2). These genes have been identified in families with breast cancer and it has been proven to increase the risk of ovarian cancer.
  • Estrogen replacement therapy – especially when used for a long time and in large doses
  • Menstruations – menstruations before the age of 12 and menopause after the age of 52, increase the risk of ovarian cancer.
  • Never giving birth
  • IUD
  • Fertility treatments
  • Smoking
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome, etc.


Types of Ovarian Cancer

Types of ovarian cancer include:

  • Epithelial tumors – are the most common type of ovarian tumors. These tumors begin in the thin outside layer that covers the ovaries.
  • Stromal tumors – are also rare, only in 7% of cases. They are usually diagnosed at an earlier stage and begin in the hormone – producing cells of the ovarian tissue.
  • Germ cell tumors – are a rare type of ovarian cancer that usually affects younger women. Germ cell tumors begin in the egg-producing cells.


What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer?

Signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer include:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Fullness when eating even small amounts of food
  • Weight loss
  • Discomfort in the pelvis area
  • Changes in bowel habits, such as constipation altered with diarrhea
  • Frequent urination, etc.

How is Ovarian Cancer Diagnosed?

First of all the most important thing is to diagnose this type of cancer on time. Usually ovarian cancer is asymptomatic at the beginning, or the symptoms are nonspecific, making it more difficult to diagnose. When diagnosed, the cancer has usually spread into other pelvic or abdominal organs. Diagnosing methods of ovarian cancer include:

  • Pelvic examination
  • CT – Scan of the pelvis and abdomen
  • Blood test, which can detect the CA 125 protein


How Is Ovarian Cancer Treated?

A correct staging of ovarian cancer is necessary before considering any possible treatment. Stages of ovarian cancer include:

Stage I – cancer is found in one or both ovaries.

Stage II – cancer has spread to other parts of the pelvis.

Stage III – cancer has spread to the abdomen.

Stage IV – cancer is found outside the abdomen.

Treatment methods generally used for ovarian cancer include surgery and chemotherapy.

Surgery generally involves removing of the uterus, fallopian tubes and both ovaries together with the lymph nodes and omentum. Less extensive surgery is possible in cases when the ovarian cancer is diagnosed at an early stage.

Chemotherapy – includes the use of medications that will kill the remaining cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs can be administrated intravenously or directly into the abdominal cavity. In advanced cases, chemotherapy might be the only treating method for ovarian cancer.

Some factors can help low the possibility of developing ovarian cancer. These factors are:

  • Being pregnant and giving birth
  • Breastfeeding
  • Use of contraceptives for at least 10 years
  • Daily intake of Aspirin, etc.



Vaginal Candidiasis: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Vaginal Candidiasis: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Vaginal Candidiasis: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Vaginal candidiasis is an extremely common fungal yeast infection of the vagina. This condition is also referred to as vaginal thrush, candidal vulvovaginitis, and vaginal yeast infection. These infections are named after the Candida albicans fungus, as that’s what causes them. Normally, the Candida yeast or fungi are a part of the usual vaginal flora just like the healthy lactobacilli. However, the lactobacilli help keep the Candida in very small numbers to maintain a healthy pH and environment in the vagina. The problem arises when this balance tips towards the Candida and they grow in abnormally high numbers, thus resulting in the vaginal irritation, itching, and odorless discharge, classic signs of a vaginal yeast infection.

This is one of the most common and frequent vaginal infections in women. As many as 20% of the women experience a vaginal yeast infection every year and around 5% are affected by this infection at least thrice in a year, while a significant 75% are likely to experience it at least once in their lifetime. Most women experience a worsening in their symptoms or a new vaginal thrush infection around their periods.


Causes of Vagina Candidiasis

Vaginal yeast infections are a direct outcome of excessive colonization or growths of Candida albicans. However, the actual causes or factors that result in an increased growth of this fungus are yet unknown. Even so, several risk factors likely to help Candida thrive in the vagina to attain abnormal levels have been acknowledged. Taking note of these factors is also important in the prevention of recurrent vaginal yeast infections in women who are susceptible to them.

* Medications:

Antibiotics and particularly broad-spectrum antibiotics destroy the good bacteria or the lactobacilli subsequently causing the Candida to thrive. Hence, a course of antibiotics is very likely to result in a vaginal yeast infection. In fact, nearly 30% of the women, who undergo treatment with oral antibiotics, end up with this infection.

* Pregnancy:

Pregnant women are usually at an increased risk of developing vaginal candidiasis, mainly because of increased estrogen levels. This hormone allows the Candida to flourish leading to frequent vaginal yeast infections in pregnancy.

* Underlying diseases:

Diabetes Mellitus and conditions like HIV/AIDS and chemotherapy that may result in a compromised immunity often result in frequent vaginal yeast infections too. Poor sugar control among diabetics is a common risk factor for frequent candidial infections. As for the conditions that result in a compromised immunity, the frequent vaginal yeast infections mainly arise because the body isn’t capable to fight the infections thanks to a poor immune system.


Symptoms of Vaginal Candidiasis

The symptoms of vaginal candidiasis are characterized by itching in and around the genitals. This is the most common and most frustrating of its symptoms. However, a woman may also experience one or more of the following symptoms when affected by a vaginal yeast infection.

* Vulval and vaginal itching

* Soreness and irritation of the vulva

* Painful urination

* Pain during intercourse

* Translucent or white discharge that is generally odorless. The discharge sometimes also appears thick and lumpy like curd or cottage cheese

* Very rarely, severe vaginal thrush infections may also cause swelling or edema of the vulva with severe redness and cracked skin


How is Vaginal Candidiasis Treated?

The treatment regimen for vaginal candidiasis is quite straightforward. It mainly involves topical or local application of anti-fungal ointments sometimes coupled with oral administration of anti-fungal medications. Genreally, treatment with azoles topically is much more successful than using nystatin for this purpose. Butoconazole, miconazole, clotrimazole, tioconazole, and terconazole are some of the azoles that are frequently found in the topical suppositories, creams, and ointments used to treat vaginal candidiasis. A single dose of flucanazole taken orally along with the local applications is often used successfully to get rid of these infections too.


NovaSure Endometrial Ablation Procedure | PBGS

NovaSure Endometrial Ablation Procedure | PBGS

NovaSure Endometrial Ablation Procedure | PBGS

NovaSure endometrial ablation is a one time, simple and very safe gynecological procedure that consists of removing the endometrium (the inner lining of the uterus).  It is usually done under local or spinal anesthesia.

NovaSure is recommended to evaluate and treat painful periods and heavy or irregular menstrual bleeding with every menstrual cycle.

Who Is NovaSure Endometrial Ablation Recommended For?

Endometrial ablation is recommended for woman who have:

  • Painful and heavy periods every month,
  • Anemia due to excessive loss of blood with menstrual periods
  • The need for hysterectomy but for some reason this is contraindicated
  • The need to prevent the uterus.

How Is NovaSure Endometrial Ablation Performed?

NovaSure endometrial ablation has been proved to be very successful. In 90% of the cases the menstrual flow has been reduced or totally stopped. The procedure consists in destroying the inner lining of the uterus by delivering radiofrequency energy, for a couple of seconds. First your doctor will open the cervix of the uterus, insert a slender wand and extend a triangular mesh device inside of the uterus. This mesh device will gently expand and fit the size of your uterus. Through this mesh radio frequent energy is delivered into the uterus, for about 90 seconds. After the procedure is completed, the mesh device is pulled back into the wand and removed from the uterus.

Possible Side Effects

Even though NovaSure endometrial ablation is a safe procedure, effects and complications are possible.

Possible side effects of NovaSure endometrial ablation include:

  • Abdominal cramping
  • Mild to moderate pain – You may have menstrual-like cramps for a few days. Over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help relieve cramping after the procedure.
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Frequent urination – You may need to pass urine more often during the first 24 hours after endometrial ablation.
  • Vaginal discharge – A watery discharge, mixed with blood, may occur for a few weeks. The discharge is typically heaviest for the first few days after the procedure.
  • Spotting, etc.

Complications of NovaSure Endometrial Ablation

Complications of NovaSure endometrial ablation are very rare, but when they occur they are very severe and life-threatening. Possible complications of the NovaSure endometrial ablation include:

  • Accidental perforation of the uterus
  • Thermal injuries of the uterus and bowel
  • Cervical laceration (tearing of the cervix-opening of the uterus)
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Pulmonary edema

When Is This Procedure Contraindicated?

Keep in mind that NovaSure endometrial ablation should be considered only in cases when no future pregnancies are desired. If you and your partner want to have children in the future, NovaSure endometrial ablation is not recommended. However, pregnancies are still possible, even after NovaSure endometrial ablation. In these cases, when a pregnancy occurs after endometrial ablation, there are greater risks for the baby and even for the mother. Since the uterine lining would not be able to properly support the development of the fetus, a pregnancy after NovaSure endometrial ablation will be dangerous. It will likely end in miscarriage.

NovaSure endometrial ablation is also contraindicated in cases when a woman has just recently gave birth, cervical or endometrial cancer, active genital, urinary or pelvic infection or an IUD, after menopause, etc.

Keep in mind that NovaSure endometrial ablation is not a sterilization procedure. Contraception is still needed for woman who have not passed menopause.

You may also need to avoid sexual intercourse for a period of time after the procedure.

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This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. The information is not medical advice.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.