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The Top 5 Tips for Selecting an OB-GYN
For women, selecting an obstetrician-gynecologist – more commonly referred to as an OB-GYN – is one of the most significant decisions she will have to face. Whether or not she plans to expect a child in the near future, attending an OB-GYN’s office for routine, regular visits is a crucial component of her overall, optimal health. OB-GYN’s are the doctors who specialize in women’s health, who assist with menstruation, menopause, childbirth and other conditions only women can experience. In other words, going to the OB-GYN is kind of a big deal – so it’s important to choose the best one that is located nearby to you.
1. Make sure you are compatible.
Similar to a regular physician, not every OB-GYN is going to be a good match for you. Sometimes, it takes a few visits with more than one doctor, at more than one practice, to pinpoint exactly what you are looking for in an OB-GYN. While some doctors might miss the mark on every single characteristic you want them to posses, others may be extremely similar to you. Whatever you find the most important – whether it’s extra screening for a serious condition, or trying for an all-natural birth at the time of your delivery – make sure that the OB-GYN is on the same page as you, or at least willing to meet you halfway.
2. Check out patient testimonials and recommendations.
Past and present patient testimonials are the closest word-of-mouth advice you’ll get regarding the prospective OB-GYN you are on the fence about choosing. These patient testimonials can usually be found on the OB-GYN’s website – but a quick Google search could also produce some accurate results as well. If the majority of the patient testimonials are positive, and inform you that the OB-GYN is one that values his or her patients and runs a respectable practice, then that OB-GYN is worth looking into.
3. Research what hospital he or she is affiliated with.
Expectant mothers – and those women who are looking to conceive somewhere down the road – should always ask about the OB-GYN’s hospital affiliation. Some OB-GYN’s strictly deliver babies out of one hospital only, while other practices are affiliated with more than one, giving you more options to choose from. Sometimes, the hospital is a make or break factor for women who are expecting – if they don’t like the hospital that the OB-GYN works out of, they might need to consider finding a new one altogether.
4. Keep an open line of communication.
If you’re trying out an OB-GYN for the first time, but you’re still not so sure about whether or not they are the best fit for you, always voice your opinions. When you are open and honest about how you feel regarding a procedure or the way that the OB-GYN handles something, it will shed some light on how they react, and make you consider if that truly is who you want to see as your OB-GYN.
5. Schedule a consultation.
The best way to pick an OB-GYN is to give them a chance. Schedule a consultation at a prospective OB-GYN practice that you’ve done some previous research on. If you think they might be a good match for you, it is definitely worth contacting the office and making an initial appointment. At this consultation, the staff should be accommodating and friendly to you, making you feel comfortable in their office. This allows you to get a feel for the overall atmosphere of the office, see what type of equipment they use, and most importantly, meet the OB-GYN face-to-face.
Make an Appointment at Anthony C. Quartell, M.D. and Associates
At Anthony C. Quartell, M.D. and Associates, we always welcome new patients with open arms, and we’re more than happy to provide them with any more information they need to make a final decision on whether or not they’d like to choose Dr. Quartell as their OB-GYN. Dr. Quartell is a highly qualified and experienced medical doctor who specializes in obstetrics, gynecology and minimally invasive gynecological surgery. Contact us by calling 973- 968-4611 to make an appointment.
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Even if it’s not your first mammogram, many women often are anxious before appointments. But there’s no need to be stressed! A breast screening is an important step in taking care of your body. Use our blog below to learn more about what the procedure entails and how to prepare for it to help ease your nerves!
What is a Mammogram?
A mammogram is one of the best ways to detect breast cancer as early as possible. Using low-dose X-rays, this specific type of breast imaging allows specialists to look for changes in a woman’s breast tissue. It is crucial that you do not put off your mammogram. The technology that is used can detect lumps that are too small to be felt in a self-examination. This is when breast cancer is easiest to treat.
How to Prepare for Your Mammogram
If you haven’t started menopause, it is best to schedule your mammogram for the week after your period. You don’t want to schedule it in the days leading up to or during your menstrual cycle, especially if that’s when you tend to experience breast tenderness. You may prefer to schedule your appointment for early in the day, as you cannot wear any deodorant, powder, lotion or ointment. Some of the ingredients in these products can show up on an X-ray.
On the day of your appointment, be sure to wear a two-piece outfit. You only have to remove your top for the exam, so separates make things more convenient. Be sure to describe any breast changes or problems to your doctor before the mammogram begins. You also need to tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or may be pregnant.
What Happens During a Mammogram?
During your screening, you and your technologist will be the only two people in the room. He or she will position you to get two X-rays of each breast. For some women, more pictures may be needed. If that’s the case, no need to worry! A technologist may reposition you for an extra X-ray or two, but this is usually just to get a better view. If you have implants, additional photos are almost always required.
To get the highest quality picture, your breasts need to be flattened. This allows the breast tissue to spread, ensuring a clear view of the breast and reducing the amount of radiation needed to produce an image. Some women experience some pain or discomfort during the compression. While the appointment usually takes about 20 minutes, the compression only lasts about 10 to 20 seconds per picture. Be sure to tell the technologist if you’re experiencing a tremendous amount of pain.
About Your Mammogram Results
A full report of your results will be sent to your health care provider. If there are any abnormal findings, the radiologist will send you a letter in the mail detailing what they found to be abnormal. While abnormal mammogram results can be scary, it does not necessarily mean you have cancer. It could just mean higher-resolution images or an ultrasound is needed to further examine you. Many women who have initial abnormal results are found to be perfectly healthy.
When Should You Schedule Your First Mammogram?
There is a lot of debate as to when women should schedule their first mammogram. Before 2009, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) used to recommend all women over 40 should schedule a yearly mammogram. But in 2009, the USPSTF updated its screening recommendations to state that a woman who is at average risk for breast cancer could wait until she turned 50, and that she could schedule a mammogram every 2 years, instead of yearly. This has caused much debate within the medical community, making it unclear for women as to when they should schedule their mammograms.
The best thing to do is to speak with your doctor. He or she will be able to help you decide what is the right choice for your body, depending on your medical history and risk of developing breast cancer.
Breast Health Services in Livingston, New Jersey
If you are concerned about your risk of developing breast cancer, it is important that you speak with an experienced gynecologist. Dr. Quartell and his staff would be happy to answer any questions or address any concerns you may have about your breast health, or any gynecological condition you may be experiencing. For more information or to schedule a visit to our Livingston, New Jersey office, please contact us today.