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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Chinese Ring IUD in 3-D Ultrasound

Ring IUD seen in 3-D Ultrasound inside the womb
IUDs come in many varieties, some of which do not have strings, such as this IUD. Since it does not have a string to check the position we can use ultrasound. This ring was developed in Germany by Dr. Ernst Grafenberg. It was originally made of silver, but there was some copper contamination of most of their silver which was felt to help it be effective. Now most are stainless steel, and very few women would ever have an allergic reaction to the metal. The stainless steel was origninally made in Shanghai and this the IUD also is called the 'Shanghai Ring.' Although it is shaped like a small coil which forms a solid ring, when placed in the uterus it conforms to the fundus of the uterus which helps it's effectiveness. It is difficult, but not impossible to remove, and many women will select this device because they plan to no longer have children and it can safely be left in the uterus for 20 years or longer

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Age of Menopause

The average age of menopause is 51.4 years old. This age does run in families, and anything from 45-55 is normal. The age of menopause is remarkably consistent from culture to culture suggesting that it is not our diet that is responsible. Women who have very late menopause tend to having higher density of bones, very slightly. However, there is an extra 2.8% increase in probability of developing breast cancer for each year menopause is is delayed. For factors that might increase or decrease your personal age of menopause, consider a consultation with your gyno!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Mastering the Thigh Muscle Prevents Knee Arthritis in Women

General exercise advice is to build as much muscle as you can to make your metabolism rise, and to make you more fit. Being that the thigh muscle is one of our largest (the gluteus muscle of the buttock, and the lats are actually larger), building your thigh muscle strength will give you a lot of return for your workout!. In a recent study from Austria reported in Reuters Health) they showed that if your thigh  are weak you are more likely to develop knee osteoarthritis. so it is very important to your future mobility as well as your future ability to maneuver a soccer ball, lunge for a backhand, or push off the wall in swimming! Study author Dr. Adam Culvenor, a researcher at Paracelsus Medical University in Salzburg, Austria was quoted about the publication in Arthritis Care and Research, February 8 to say "While our recent study has highlighted the important role of strong thigh muscles in reducing the risk of knee osteoarthritis development, particularly in women, it is not possible to guarantee that having strong thigh muscles will protect women from developing knee osteoarthritis because there are many other factors that play into the disease." Squats are the exercise that can build thigh muscles very successfully, but they should be done carefully. Basic squat position and information can be found at WebMD.  Essentially you want to optimize your quadriceps and hamstring strength. Being able to perform the tasks more easily, take stairs more quickly, and generally feeling like getting your step counts is easier can indicate that your exercises are working, but there are other ways to measure the effectiveness of your training with state of the art bone densitometry body composition testing

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Chemicals You Are Exposed To Can Disrupt Your Hormones

For many years there have been news stories about how various pesticides harm wildlife, including our beloved Bald Eagles. Gradually scientists recognized that humans exposed to food toxins, chemicals that leak into waters, and even some of these same pesticides can have disruption to their hormone system. We suspect that hair loss, aging, premature menopause, infertility, hypothyroidism as well as a host of other diseases can be related to the substances that have now gained the name Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals. One of the largest endocrine hormone producing organs in our body is our fat tissue. It has been newly reported in the American Journal Of Obstetrics and Gynecology that a number of these Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals can alter the physiology of our adipose (fat) endocrine organ and cause obesity. A new term has now arrived: Obesogen. Simply put an obesogen is a chemical that leads you to be obese. The question is what exact substances can act as an obesogen, and if we can identify them what can we do to limit exposure. If we cannot identify the obesogens what can we do to inactivate them or inactivate their effects. Obesogens you may be getting exposed to include mercury, pesticides, insecticides (commercial), BPA, and phthalates. Toxin testing is not always available or affordable, but it is something you can discuss with your health care provider. Organic eating will limit exposure. One solution is easy: the less adipose tissue you have the fewer hormones there are to be disrupted. So to the extent that you can lose weight, replace fat with muscle weight, or remove fat through technology such as CoolSculpting, you can begin to inactivate the effects of obesogens. Whether at a heart healthy weight or carrying extra girth, the importance of minimizing toxin exposure has become clearer and clearer. If you are interested in finding ways to combat obesogens come in to discuss at Women's Health Practice.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Counting Out Waist Health Inches, Ratio or Volume: It All Relates!

You are picking out that old favorite team gear and now you noticed that you are unable to button your pants as easily? The first clue to your nutritional health is not necessarily your weight. Your weight may not even have fluctuated much, but there it is, the dreaded thicker waist. Just doing a bit less? Having too much wheat based carbs? Eating sugar and forgoing the right fats? Trying the turkey and chicken instead of burgers and steaks?Weight gain in the middle is not good.  As your waist to hip ratio rises, your get thicker in the middle and even if you can button your pants, it's that you are getting that muffin top look. Whether or not you have a good or even relatively healthy 'overweight' BMI, if you have too thick of a waist it is called central obesity,  as measured by waist circumference (men – greater than 40 inches [102 cm]; women – greater than 35 inches [89 cm]). Your BMI is a measurement of your weight to your height, and gaining muscle will adversely affect your BMI even though you may be getting both leaner and more health. Central obesity can be measured by a simple tape around your middle, and that is a good indication of your waist. And some of us then want to  get back to as pecific number, what is your magic number? For your health you probably don't have the same magic number for a healthy waistline as I do, as you may be older or younger or taller, or a different ethnicity. For all of us, improving our waist to hip ratio is important. But even more important is to decrease the fat around our gut! Fat mass gains to the BMI, however are not healthy. And fat added to the abdomen is not good. Just measuring the waist, or measuring how your waist changes relative to your heart has traditionally been a good measure of your heart health.  We know that many of us have a number in mind for our waist measurement, but just having a healthy Waist to hip ratio has been thought of as what we you like to see for the best health. Now there's a new way to measure it called the SAD (sagittal abdominal height) that is a general measurement of the true core fat. You cannot measure this by a tape, you need to measure it in other ways, such as true core measurements with DXA scans that are an accurate way to measure your fat, your muscle, your bone, and let us know exactly what makes up those inches. Let your gyno look at all these measurements, and help you understand if your core is healthy as all these numbers relate! 

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Vaginal Contraceptive Ring

If you are a female between the ages of 18 and 35 you may be eligible for a contraceptive ring investigational contraceptive medication study. Qualified participants will receive study-related medical evaluations and care at no cost. If interested, please call 217-356-3736.

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