Birth Control Pill.pmd by gdf57j


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                    The Birth Control Pill
                By Sandra Gottwald, M.D.
                Obstetrics & Gynecology

                It’s important to recognize the Birth                                      contraceptives due to these perceived
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                Control Pill for what it has                                               side effects they have heard about. But
                contributed to women’s health over                                         the facts speak for themselves.
                the years because its benefits are                                            Few women realize that they are six
                significant and far-reaching.                                              times more likely to die from a
                                                                                           pregnancy-related complication than
                Innovative contraception with                                              from any adverse effect related to
                many benefits                                                              taking the Pill and smoking under the
                     The Birth Control Pill was the                                        age of 35. In addition, studies show
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                first truly effective method of                                            that the Birth Control Pill is the only
                                                                 Sandra Gottwald, M.D.
                contraception. The pill’s convenience,                                     known medical protection against
                coupled with its success rate of over 98% when                             ovarian cancer, the deadliest of
                used correctly, made it a true medical                       gynecological malignancies. Pill use decreases a
                breakthrough.                                                woman’s risk of ovarian cancer by 40%, while
                     The Birth Control Pill’s ingenious                      lowering her risk of uterine cancer by 50%.
                combination of synthetic estrogen and                        Currently, there is no convincing evidence to show a
                progesterone prevents the pituitary gland from               relationship between the Birth Control Pill and
                stimulating the ovaries. Through this “negative              breast cancer. However the Pill does decrease
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                feedback” effect, no egg is released and conception          fibrocycstic breast disease, a painful problem for
                is prevented. And even though the ovaries are shut           many women.
                down during this process, the uterus still responds              There are countless other myths which are
                to hormonal stimulation from the Pill’s                      commonly heard. To correct two of them, Pill use
                components, and as such, a woman still experiences does not impair future fertility, and does not cause
                menstrual flow.                                              weight gain.
                     What’s particularly interesting about the Pill’s
                history is that as technology has evolved over the           Birth Control after 35
                last 41 years, so has the Pill. Formulations today               A major change in oral contraceptive labelling has
                contain approximately one-third the hormonal                 now allowed Birth Control Pill use after the age of
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                content of the original pill yet they still retain their     35. If a woman does not smoke and does not have
                effectiveness in preventing pregnancy while                  hypertension, or any history of a clotting disorder,
                minimizing side effects such as bloating and acne.           she may now safely use the Pill until she reaches
                     Applications for the Pill have increased as well.       menopause.
                In addition to contraception, the Pill is a widely               This new prescribing regimen is beneficial to
                used medical tool. Many women have benefitted                many patients who wish to maintain the pill’s many
                from the Pill’s effects in regulating menstrual              benefits during a time when contraception is still an
                cycles, decreasing blood flow and alleviating                issue and menstrual irregularities are quite
                painful cramps.                                              prominent. In fact, Birth Control Pill use is now
                                                                             succeeding hysterectomy as the primary management
                Myths still exist                                            for perimenopausal bleeding abnormalities,
                     In spite of all of these positives, myths still
                persist. Many patients hesitate to take oral
U s e           The Birth Control Pill continued..                                                  .

                preventing the need for major surgery.                    Sandra Gottwald, M.D., is an Obstetrics and
                    When menopause does intervene, a simple           Gynecology physician with Advanced Healthcare’s
                blood test taken on the seventh day of a pill-free    Cedar Creek Clinic (215 West Washington Street,
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                week can indicate the need to cease Pill use and      Grafton, 262-375-3700) and Good Hope Clinic
                                                                      (3003 West Good Hope Road, Milwaukee,
                consider the option of lower dose post-
                menopausal hormone replacement therapy, an                Dr. Gottwald and her colleagues at Advanced
                important protection against heart disease and        Healthcare are leading physicians in Obstetrics &
                osteoporosis. We are now also seeing a variation      Gynecology. Her colleagues include:
                in the Pill’s dosing regimen, with a shortened - or   Brian Bear, M.D.
                completely eliminated - “Pill Free Interval.” By      Christine Berg, M.D.
                altering this, periods can be diminished or           Ann Cornell, M.D.
                                                                      Curtis Cornella-Carlson, D.O.
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                avoided entirely.
                    In medicine, Time is the ultimate test,           Francine Cosner, M.D.
                                                                      Renee Coulter, M.D.
                validating or refuting treatments and beliefs. The
                                                                      George Geanon, M.D.
                Birth Control Pill has withstood these trials         Henry Kaminski, M.D.
                magnificently for over 40 years and will              Kathryn Kostic, M.D.
                undoubtedly enjoy a more favorable reputation         Paul Lucca, M.D.
                in the decades to come. It deserves no less.          Francesca Lynd, M.D.
                    For more information call Advanced                Barbara Rain, M.D.
                HealthLine at (262) 512-2880 or toll-free at          Tori Stephens, M.D.
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                1-888-709-2080 outside the Milwaukee metro            Mary Swiderski, M.D.
                area, or log on at                        Kathleen Szwalek, M.D.
                                                                      Gerald Vitamvas, M.D.
                                                                      Anna Marie Windsor, M.D.
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                                                                                                                     AH 11/07

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