Gynecology: The Female Reproductive System

July 30, 2021

During a woman’s reproductive period, the body goes through a lot of changes. During this time, different gynecological issues tend to arise from time to time. A lot of women today suffer from gynecological problems in their lifetime. In most instances, the conditions are mild and treatable. However, some cases can be severe, leading to other complications such as affecting a woman’s fertility or even the quality of her life. Keeping your health in check as well as timely doctor visits can prevent gynecological issues, which are inclusive of the following:

Cervical Dysplasia

Cervical dysplasia is recognized as a precancerous condition of the cervix whose cause is from human papillomavirus. Usually, dysplasia occurs without any sign, and hence, an annual OB-GYN visit is advised. After 21, it is also ideal to consider a regular pap smear to help screen any abnormal cells. If a pap smear abnormal cell activity is detected, a test known as colposcopy is recommended to examine the cervix keenly. In any case, cervical dysplasia is mild; a pap smear can easily monitor cell behavior and inform the physician when the condition gets severe and calls for treatment.

Nevertheless, there are moderate and advanced cases of cervical dysplasia that call for the Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure to help in the biopsy of cervical tissue. Managing cervical dysplasia is possible, especially for patients at the age of nine to 26. In addition, the patients can receive the HPV vaccine to keep them safe from the four known strains of the virus.

Pelvic Floor Prolapse

 Pelvic organs comprise the vagina, bladder, rectum, and uterus held by ligaments and connective tissues within the pelvis. The weakening of tissue caused by menopause and chronic constipation can cause the walls of the vagina to fall. Equally, physical stress from pregnancy and childbirth can lead to the falling of the vagina walls. When one experiences this, the pelvic organs behind the vagina, including the bladder, rectum, and uterus, fall. There are non-surgical approaches such as pelvic floor physical therapy or a pessary that one can consider when treating pelvic prolapse. Using laparoscopic, vaginal, or minimally invasive abdominal surgery, one can also relieve symptoms and get durable repair in any case of cervix prolapse.

Chronic Pelvic Pain

Several women tend to experience chronic pelvic pain due to health issues that include endometriosis, irritable bowel syndrome, bladder pain syndrome, pelvic floor muscle dysfunction, and uterine leiomyoma. Chronic pelvic pain is a persistent pain between the belly button and pubic bone and lasts for a period that surpasses six months. Usually, chronic pelvic pain exceeds the discomforts that come with occasional menstrual cramps for women.  Chronic pelvic pain ranges from mild and aching to sudden and sharp pain. In addition, input from reproductive system tissues interacts with the environmental stress and prior surgical history, making the pain processing system report chronic pelvic pain.

There are different sources of chronic pelvic pain, and thus, different treatment strategies are embraced. The treatment of chronic pelvic pain can be done using non-surgical therapies, including pelvic floor exercises. The exercise helps in strengthening the levator muscle that offers support for both the pelvic organs and bladder. Dietary and behavioral modifications are simple self-help remedies that help in managing pelvic floor problems. Integrative approaches such as acupuncture are also being used in managing pelvic floor disorders. Medication therapy, pelvic floor physical therapy, and hormone therapy have also played a part in treating and managing chronic pelvic pain. There are also advanced surgical procedures that have helped in treating chronic pelvic pain. The medical procedures include prolapse repair, urinary incontinence surgery, virginal reconstruction, myomectomy, hysterectomy, uterine preservation prolapse surgery, cystoscopy, and endoscopic surgery.

Uterine Fibroids

Uterine fibroids are known to be common benign tumors that affect women and are also called leiomyomas or myomas. The tumors are known to develop in the uterus of women during childbearing years. These fibroids can occur differently and in various parts of the uterus. The primary cause of fibroids is still unclear; however, hormones, family history, and pregnancy are some of the factors that can influence the growth of fibroids. Patients with mild symptoms of uterine fibroids can be treated using non-surgical approaches. Uterine Fibroid Embolization is a non-surgical approach that involves blocking blood supply that fuels the growth of fibroids by injecting embolizing agents. Hormone treatment such as the use of birth control pills can assist in shrinking the size of your fibroids and minimize symptoms. Uterine fibroids can also be removed through a surgical method called a myomectomy. In this procedure, the fibroids are removed without affecting the uterus. Hysterectomy is yet a surgical procedure used in the removal of fibroids.  The process involves the complete removal of the uterus along with the fibroids.

Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is the lack of control in the release of urine. The problem can be caused by temporary health conditions such as urinary tract infection. In other cases, urinary incontinence can result from muscle and nerve changes around the bladder. Urinary incontinence is divided into two types, which are stress incontinence as well as urge incontinence. Stress incontinence makes one lose urine during physical activity such as laughing, coughing, and sneezing.

On the other hand, urinary incontinence involves the uncontrolled release of urine with a solid and sudden urge to urinate; behavioral therapy, Kegel exercise, and physical therapy can treat urinary incontinence by strengthening the pelvic floor, hence increasing control. Vaginal estrogen can also assist in treating urinary incontinence. In addition, depending on the type of incontinence that one has, some medications can help decrease bladder spasms. There are also available surgical procedures that can be considered in treating urinary incontinence, for example, mid urethra sling.

Menstrual Disorders

Having prolonged menstrual bleeding, bleeding during intercourse, bleeding between periods, and painful cramps can signify menstrual disorder in women, especially those at menstruation age. Depending on the severity of the menstrual cycle problem, there are medical interventions that can be employed; most of the menstrual disorders include endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome, endometrial polyps, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, which are heavy, and endometrial hyperplasia or cancer. The diagnosis of the menstrual disorder will determine which medical intervention will be employed. The treatment methods of the menstrual disorder include non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), a progesterone implant, prescription pills, vaginal patch or ring, progesterone, and intrauterine devices. Surgical approaches are also available for patients with menstrual disorders. They include endometrial ablation, hysterectomy, uterine fibroid embolization, and hysteroscopy; minimally invasive procedures are utilized for these health issues short recovery period is an added advantage.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

This is a hormonal disorder that commonly affects women during the reproductive period. Women having this condition have prolonged menstrual periods or have excess male hormones known as androgen. Ovaries may develop several and small fluid collections, hence, fail to release eggs. The leading cause of polycystic ovary syndrome is not known. However, some factors might cause them, such as heredity factors, excess insulin, low-grade inflammation, and excess androgen. The treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome focuses on managing one’s concerns such as hirsutism, obesity, acne, and infertility. The specific treatment of PCOS involves a change of one’s lifestyle, such as weight loss. There is also a medical intervention that can help regulate one’s menstrual cycle caused by PCOS, such as the combination of birth control pills and progestin therapy.

Different women all over the world are struggling with either of the gynecological problems. Luckily, there are treatment options for either of the genealogical issue. For any woman with a gynecological issue, taking control of the situation begins by understanding their condition. This can only be made possible when one works with a specialist. Having an appointment at least once a year is vital since it helps detect any gynecological issue that could be mild and unnoticed. Seeking help from the specialists also helps one seek the proper medical intervention as per the gynecological issue they could be having. There is an array of treatment modes for the different gynecological problems, and finding the one that suits your health problem begins with seeing a specialist. A specialist will inquire about one’s medical history and conduct an appropriate exam to help develop the proper medication.

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