Breast cancer poses a potential threat to women of all ages. Like any other form of cancer, breast cancer is most treatable when it is discovered early, and treatment begins before the cancer has grown or spread. This is why keeping up with annual breast exams and screenings is so important. We understand that breast screening appointments can be uncomfortable for many women, especially younger women who are just beginning to have their breasts examined. In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, our board-certified gynecologists wanted to answer a few common questions about what women can expect during a breast exam.

Ask the Gynecologists Common Questions About Breast ExamsQuestion #1: What happens during a clinical breast exam?

During a clinical breast exam, one of our healthcare providers physically and visually examines the breasts to look for any potential irregularities. This may include any changes in size or shape, as well as lumps, dimples, redness, or leakage that may have appeared since the last time the breasts were examined.

Question #2: How will my breast exams change as I age?

A clinical breast exam will always be part of an annual breast exam, but starting at age 40, we highly recommend for women to begin undergoing annual screening mammograms as well. Some women may be recommended to begin mammograms sooner if they have a family history of breast cancer or other risk factors. A mammogram uses x-rays to screen for suspicious areas within the breast tissue. During the mammogram, the breast is exposed to a small dose of ionizing radiation that helps produce an image of the breast tissue. Unlike clinical breast exams, mammograms can help us detect lumps and other potential abnormalities before they can be seen or felt. Mammograms are recommended until a woman reaches 75-years of age.

Question #3: What can I do between annual breast exams to help protect myself from breast cancer?

Breast self-exams are an integral part of detecting potential signs of breast cancer early. Self-exams involve a woman regularly feeling her breasts for lumps, tumors, cysts, or anything else irregular. It’s best to do this monthly in order to be aware of any recent changes. Our gynecologists recommend for women to wait a few days after they have completed their most recent menstrual cycle, as hormonal changes that occur during a period can affect the size and feel of the breasts.

Here at Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett, breast exams are part of all annual well woman exams. We understand that it may be impossible to prevent breast cancer from occurring for some women. However, there is incredible value in being proactive and keeping up with your breast exams and screenings in order to promote the best possible long-term health and wellness. To schedule a screening appointment today, please contact Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett. And follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more information, news, and details on our upcoming health and wellness events.

Sexual intercourse is supposed to be a healthy and pleasurable experience. However, this may not be the case for women who experience vaginismus. Vaginismus is a unique health condition that causes the muscles in the vagina to involuntarily contract in response to any form of vaginal penetration. Since vaginismus is a rarely discussed and somewhat mysterious subject, our board-certified gynecologists wanted to shed some light on the matter by explaining how different types of vaginismus can affect women differently.

What are the Different Types of VaginismusPrimary Vaginismus

Primary vaginismus describes women who have always experienced their vaginismus symptoms. This means that the woman has never been able to tolerate any form of vaginal penetration without issue.

Secondary Vaginismus

In some cases, women who have previously enjoyed vaginal penetration without any issues can develop vaginismus symptoms. This is known as secondary vaginismus. Although every case is different, secondary vaginismus can originate as a result of childbirth, a specific traumatic event, or certain vaginal infections.

Global Vaginismus

Global vaginismus refers to women whose vaginismus symptoms occur during any and all forms of vaginal penetration. This can occur during sex, while trying to insert a tampon, or during routine gynecological exams.

Situational Vaginismus

Having situation vaginismus means that a woman may experience her symptoms during some types of vaginal penetration, but not during others. For example, a woman’s vaginismus may be triggered during sex, but not when she tries to insert a tampon. Vaginismus is a unique condition that may affect every woman differently.

We understand that vaginismus can be incredibly stressful. That’s why we offer a wide range of potential treatment options depending on each individual woman’s symptoms and needs. For more information on vaginismus or to schedule an appointment with one of our reproductive healthcare providers, please contact Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more news, tips, and more.

We all know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. There are many ways to spread awareness and give back, but one way we have done so over the past couple years is by participating in the Paint Gwinnett Pink Walk/Run for Breast Cancer. Paint Gwinnett Pink works to generate money to benefit breast cancer patients and Gwinnett Medical Center’s Breast Program by improving patient access to the most advanced detection technology, breast cancer screenings, and more. With this in mind, Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett is proud to announce that we will once again be one of the sponsors for this year’s event, scheduled for Saturday, October 26th, 2019 at Coolray Field in Lawrenceville. Registration begins at 7am.

Paint Gwinnett Pink 2019Before we get too far into the event, we wanted to provide some statistics to reinforce the importance of breast cancer awareness. Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers for women. Roughly 1 in every 8 women in the US (or about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer at some point in their lifetime. It is estimated that nearly 270,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed this year alone, as well as almost 63,000 cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer. The death rate for women with breast cancer is higher than those for any other form of cancer, second only to lung cancer.

We understand that breast cancer affects us all. That’s why we feel so strongly about this cause and organizations like Paint Gwinnett Pink who do so much in our local area to help support this important cause. It means so much to us to do our part to help spread breast cancer awareness here in the Gwinnett area and beyond, whether it be at an education-focused event like our recent breast cancer seminar or at an event like Paint Gwinnett Pink. Don’t forget to join the Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett team when you register for Paint Gwinnett Pink this year!

We can’t wait to see everyone who comes out to this outstanding event this year. For more information on Paint Gwinnett Pink, check out our specials and events page for all the details. If you would like to learn more about breast cancer or to schedule a screening appointment with one of our reproductive healthcare providers, please contact Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett today. You can also follow along with us on Facebook and Twitter for more tips, updates and details on all our upcoming Health & Wellness events.

One of the most dangerous things about polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is that many experts consider it a stealth medical condition. Most women with PCOS do not know that they have this medical condition. According to the PCOS Foundation, although between 5% and 10% of women of childbearing age in the US are affected by PCOS, less than half are ever diagnosed. That’s why, in honor of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Awareness Month, we wanted to provide information about the common warning signs.

warning signs of PCOSIrregular Bleeding

Irregular menstrual bleeding is the most common sign associated with PCOS. Irregular bleeding during PCOS is caused by higher-than-normal levels of androgens as well as lower-than-normal levels of progesterone creating a hormone imbalance. This can take the form of menstrual cycles that are infrequent, irregular or prolonged.

Hair Issues

Some women with PCOS experience thinning hair on their head, which can worsen in middle age. Additionally, increased androgen levels can trigger hirsutism, a condition that leads to the growth of excess facial and body hair.

Fertility Issues

The hormonal imbalance during PCOS can interfere with a woman’s ability to ovulate normally, which is essential for pregnancy to occur. With that in mind, it’s no wonder why many women with PCOS experience fertility issues and difficulty getting pregnant. In fact, the PCOS Foundation estimates that nearly 70% female infertility cases are related to PCOS.

Sudden Weight Gain

Unexplained, sudden weight gain (especially around the abdomen) is another common sign of PCOS. This may be a result of insulin resistance that causes difficulties for the body when it attempts to metabolize blood sugar. In addition to weight gain, PCOS can also make it especially difficult to lose weight.

At Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett, our reproductive healthcare providers have extensive experience diagnosing and treating PCOS. We take the time necessary to work with every woman we see to develop the most helpful and appropriate treatment plan possible. If you would like more information about PCOS or to schedule an appointment with one of our providers, please contact Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett. And follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more news, tips, and updates on our upcoming health & wellness events.

Menopause marks a significant point of transition in a woman’s life. This change can be frightening to many women concerned about what menopause may mean for their health. With menopause comes an increased risk of some very serious health concerns including heart disease, stroke, and osteoporosis. Additionally, menopause can also have considerable effects on a woman’s sexual and reproductive health. To help shine a light on this subject, our board-certified gynecologists wanted to explain some of the ways that menopause can affect reproductive health and what can be done to address these symptoms.

GAoGVaginal Dryness 

Vaginal dryness is very common after menopause due to a significant decrease in the amount of estrogen produced by the body. This dryness can lead to vaginal itching as well as painful, unsatisfying sex that may reduce a woman’s interest in having intercourse. There are a number of intravaginal medications that can be used to treat vaginal dryness. Additionally, we perform FemTouch™ Non-Surgical Laser Vaginal Rejuvenation treatments to help women who experience vaginal dryness during or after menopause. 

Urinary Tract Infections

There is also a connection between menopause and an increased risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs). It’s natural for a woman’s bladder to begin to lose both volume and elasticity as she ages, leading to more frequent urination. This combined with a weakening of the vaginal walls and a thinning of the urethra can allow more bacteria to easily reach the bladder, leading to higher risk of UTIs. UTIs can often be treated with a course of oral antibiotics.

Urinary Incontinence

Additionally, this more frequent urination can contribute to different types of urinary incontinence. This can take the form of frequent, sudden urges to urinate, followed by involuntary loss of urine (urge incontinence), or the leakage of urine after coughing, laughing, or other physical activity. Depending on the type of incontinence, we offer several treatment options that can be helpful.

In our experience, the more knowledgeable and well-researched a woman is before menopause, the more prepared she will be to effectively manage their symptoms and successfully handle their transition. For more information on menopause or to schedule a consultation with our reproductive healthcare providers, please contact Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for additional tips, news, and updates on our upcoming health and wellness events.

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Contact Information

Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett
601 Professional Drive, Suite 330
Lawrenceville, Georgia 30046   
Phone: 678.380.1980   
Fax: 678.380.7348

Our Hours

Monday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Tuesday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Wednesday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Thursday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Friday 8:30AM–12PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

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