Urogynecology Procedures | What to Expect at an Appointment
During Women’s Health Week (May 14-20), it’s easy to talk about the importance of diet, exercise, and yearly pelvic exams. However, it’s harder to talk about the more embarrassing but common health problems women face. Many women believe that urinary incontinence is a normal, unavoidable part of aging, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Learning more about urogynecology procedures, and talking comfortably about them is necessary for better health.
You don’t have to live with incontinence or pelvic discomfort. There’s an entire field of medicine dedicated to helping you overcome these common health problems. It’s called urogynecology, and it’s just one of the specialties we offer at Women’s Care Florida to help women live happier healthier lives.
What is urogynecology?
Urogynecology is a subspecialty of obstetrics and gynecology. It focuses on treating noncancerous conditions that affect a women’s pelvic health. These include urinary incontinence, bowel incontinence, and pelvic organ prolapse. The doctors who practice this type of medicine are called urogynecologists. If you have experienced problems with urinary or bowel control, a urogynecologist may become your new favorite person.
What do urogynecologists do?
Urogynecologists specialize in restoring comfort, function, and quality of life to women facing pelvic health problems. After four years of medical school and training, these surgeons complete an additional three years of advanced training in urogynecology.
When they have finally completed their 11 long years of graduate education and training, urogynecologists can provide surgical and nonsurgical treatments. Urogynecologists only treat women, so you can feel comfortable knowing your doctor has experience caring for your needs.
What happens during a urogynecology appointment?
During your first urogynecology appointment, your doctor will ask you about the problems you typically experience. Also, you’ll discuss when they occur and how often. You should be honest and open with your urogynecologist. Remember, they specialize in treating these conditions because they care about helping you improve your quality of life. Your physician may also ask about any surgeries you’ve had or the medicines you take. Some operations may change the way the muscles in the pelvis work, leading to incontinence or other problems. Some medications can also increase the risk of urinary problems.
What are urogynecology procedures?
Your physician will perform a pelvic exam similar to your yearly exam. They may look for signs of pelvic organ prolapse, such as a bulge in the vagina, and feel your uterus and bladder to ensure they are in the right locations. Based on your symptoms, your physician may also have you undergo urogynecology procedures such as a bladder emptying test or urodynamic testing. These tests assess how well your bladder works and give your doctor more information about your health.
Your doctor may schedule additional tests or imaging to get a better understanding of your pelvic health. Once your urogynecologist has all your test results, you can work together to determine what treatment may be right for your lifestyle. To learn more, watch for the next post in this series, about the most common urogynecology conditions.
At Women’s Care Florida, our three board-certified urogynecologists offer personalized, caring support for women facing pelvic health problems. We’ve helped thousands of women regain control and improve their quality of life. Schedule an appointment today to uncover the causes of your pelvic discomfort and explore treatment options.