Menopause is the time in a woman's life when her menstrual period has stopped. Menopause is caused by a decrease in the ovaries' production of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, which eventually results in the ovaries' ceasing to produce eggs, and the end of menstruation.
A woman has reached menopause when she has not had a menstrual period for at least 12 months. Menopause is a natural process that takes several years. During this time, fertility decreases, and periods often change in duration, frequency, and amount of blood flow. This stage is known as perimenopause, and it is often when symptoms of menopause begin. The average age that menopause occurs is 51, although it may occur prematurely in women who have had total hysterectomies or have received chemotherapy or radiation treatments.
Women making this difficult transition in their lives will receive a health-status assessment so they can receive appropriate counsel and treatment. After screening you for conditions, we will provide treatment for associated symptoms, including hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, insomnia and irritability.
An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that can form in the ovaries. The ovaries are two small organs that produce eggs and female hormones. The ovaries affect our body's appearance, menstrual cycle and pregnancy.
There are several types of ovarian cysts. The most common form of a cyst is a functional cyst. Functional cysts form during ovulation. Eggs that are produced each month are grown in tiny sacs called follicles. After these sacs release the egg, the sac dissolves turning into corpus luteum, which produces hormones. If the sac does not dissolve, a functional cyst will form from the sac and cause them to grow. Normally the cysts disappear within a few months. They are rarely cancerous but can cause mild symptoms.
Other types of cysts can form as a result of disease or from the egg not being released. These may be larger and more painful. While some ovarian cysts don't cause any symptoms, others may experience the following symptoms:
- Pressure, swelling or pain in the abdomen
- Pelvic pain
- Pain during sex
- Weight gain
- Abnormal bleeding
We use pelvic exams and ultrasounds to diagnose ovarian cysts and provide medical and/or surgical treatment for symptomatic women. If a cancerous ovarian mass is identified, referral to a gynecologic oncologist (female cancer specialist) is made.
Sometimes women will have symptoms of fullness, pelvic pressure or the sensation of something having “dropped.” We offer a variety of treatments for pelvic support defects, which may include cystoceles, rectoceles, enteroceles, and vaginal vault prolapse. All can be corrected surgically, sometimes in conjunction with a urologist or other surgical specialist.