Our goal is to highlight medical facilities that are pioneering novel techniques to improve the health of women everywhere. You’ll find a formidable group of individuals here who aren’t content with the existing quo.
“What’s the problem?” “What’s next??” The Cleveland Clinic’s gynecologists and other specialists in women’s health ask themselves these questions regularly.
Beri Ridgeway, MD, the hospital’s head of staff, believes it can be traced back to its history. We’ve always had it, “[it’s] in our DNA from the beginning.”
Women’s health discoveries at Cleveland Clinic are nothing new. George Crile Jr., MD, a pioneer in lumpectomies, advocated for a more conservative approach to breast cancer treatment in the 1950s when drastic mastectomies were frequently done on women with breast cancer.
In 2019, doctors helped a lady give birth to a baby girl after she had a uterine transplant from a dead donor. In the United States, this was a first.
Discreet but Remarkable
Medical breakthroughs don’t need to make headlines for them to impact patients’ lives profoundly. For example, genetic testing for malignancies is a viable option.
Oncologic oncologist and interim leader of the Women’s Health Institute, Chad Michener, MD, believes that genetic screening has had a “big influence” on his ability to help his patients, and he’s grateful for the opportunity.
While the cancer is still treatable, “you can detect it early and save your life,” he adds. Prophylactic surgery or chemoprevention may be an option for a woman.
It’s also exciting for Dr. Michener to regularly give patients an advanced ovarian cancer therapy known as hyperthermic intraoperative peritoneal chemotherapy.
Tumors are surgically removed during this operation, and cancer-killing medications are injected directly into the abdomen.
The urogynecology team of Dr. Michener assists women with pelvic organ prolapse (which often results in leaks) and avoids hysterectomy in the meantime; It’s possible to retain the uterus in place and control the prolapse at the same time, he explains.
Cleveland Clinic physicians are also reconsidering preventive medicine, and the Rx need for mammograms has been eliminated to make scheduling simpler.
There are also CustomFit Physicals specifically designed for women in their various life stages: A Pap smear, a bone density scan, and screens for heart disease and breast cancer may all be done in one visit for a postmenopausal woman.
To address the question, “What’s next?” physician-scientists are undertaking various medical studies.
Vaccination against the severe type of breast cancer known as triple-negative is now being tested in a clinical study.
Vulvar electrical stimulation after vaginal delivery is also being studied as a possible method of preventing pelvic floor issues (such as prolapse).
The mechanics of endometriosis are being investigated, as is the prevention of cervical cancer in underprivileged women.
According to Dr. Ridgeway, one of the Cleveland Clinic’s significant goals is to assist close the knowledge gap in women’s health.
“Studies on males have traditionally been applied to women, yet our bodies are fundamentally different. Understanding and respecting such differences is critical.”
She claims that women’s diseases and symptoms have lagged in scientific studies. It’s time to get up to speed.
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