What is an OB-GYN?

March 1, 2017

Obstetrician-gynecologists (OB-GYNs) care for women throughout their lives. That care starts in early adolescence and continues through menopause and beyond. And they provide this care in two very important ways: They help women have healthy babies and safe deliveries, and they diagnose and treat health issues that are particular to women.

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This means OB-GYNs provide crucial:

• Preconception care. OB-GYNs help women get as healthy as possible before pregnancy. This is especially important for women who have health problems, such as diabetes.

• Prenatal care. These pregnancy checkups help OB-GYNs spot problems with mom or baby early, when they may be easier to treat.

In addition, OB-GYNs treat painful periods and abnormal vaginal bleeding. They check for early signs of breast, cervical and other cancers that are particular to women. And they help women who are having hot flashes or pelvic pain.

Extensive training

All OB-GYNS complete medical school and a four-year residency program. This includes training in surgery. But some continue their training. They may specialize in:

Gynecologic oncology. These OB-GYNs treat cancers in reproductive organs, including cervical, ovarian and uterine cancers.

Reproductive endocrinology and infertility. These specialists help women get pregnant and manage problems with hormones.

Female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. These OB-GYNS treat incontinence and other urinary disorders.

Maternal-fetal medicine. These OB-GYNs help moms to-be with high-risk pregnancies.

Do you want to meet our OB-GYN team? Visit us at www.bassett.org.

Sources: American College of Gynecologists and Obstetricians; American College of Surgeons; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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