Treating pelvic organ prolapse

Pelvic relaxation is weakness or laxity in the supporting structures of the pelvic region. Bladder, urethral, rectal, or uterine tissue may then bulge into or out of the vagina. This is called pelvic organ prolapse. It's not a dangerous condition, and it doesn't necessarily worsen over time, but it can drastically affect a woman's quality of life by causing discomfort and embarrassment and limiting sexual and physical activity. Treatment options range from doing nothing to surgical repair. (Locked) More »

Peripheral artery disease

When atherosclerotic plaque and blood clots reduce blood flow to the legs or, less often, to the arms, the condition is called peripheral artery disease (PAD). PAD makes walking painful and slows injury healing. In the worst cases, it can result in the loss of a toe, foot, or leg — or even death. Women who develop peripheral artery disease tend to do so a decade later than men, by which time other conditions may mask the symptoms, delaying diagnosis. More »

An emergency contraceptive pill helps treat fibroids

Every year, hundreds of thousands of women in the United States are treated for fibroids — noncancerous growths in the uterine wall. Fibroids don't always cause problems, but when they do, the most common complaint is heavy menstrual bleeding, often accompanied by iron-deficiency anemia.  Medications called gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists can help shrink fibroids. However, their use is limited by side effects such as bone loss, hot flashes, and depression. Now, researchers have found that an oral drug with fewer side effects is highly effective in shrinking fibroids and reducing bleeding. (Locked) More »

Spinal manipulation and exercise trump drugs for neck pain

Today's computer-dominated workplace is especially tough on necks, because we sit so long with our shoulders slumped and heads extended toward monitors. People often recover from an episode of neck pain within a year, but relapses are common, and pain may come and go indefinitely. A comparison of treatments for neck pain found that both spinal manipulation and a program of exercises were more effective than medication. (Locked) More »

Severe sleep apnea is linked to cardiovascular death in women

Obstructive sleep apnea causes pauses in breathing during sleep, with symptoms that include snoring and daytime sleepiness. Women with this sleep disorder may be at increased risk of dying from a cardiovascular event such as a stroke or heart attack, and treatment with a therapy called continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, may reduce that risk. These are the findings of the first study to examine the relationship between obstructive sleep apnea and cardiovascular death exclusively in women. Obstructive sleep apnea causes pauses in breathing during sleep, with symptoms that include snoring and daytime sleepiness. Studies have shown that severe apnea raises the risk of fatal cardiovascular events in men, and that CPAP is protective, but until now, data on women have been lacking. (Locked) More »