Newsletter Index -- January 1. 2007
Happy New Year!
a TV star on NBC and Bravo!
very own nurse practitioner, Barbara Dehn, has been selected to be a regular
guest expert on women’s health for NBC’s newest daytime show, iVillageLive.
Tune in to her next
appearance on Monday, January 8th.
The show is seen nationwide from 12 – 1 pm on NBC, Bravo and on-line
via the website: ivillagelive.com. Since
so many women have busy schedules, the show can also be seen on-line for 24
hours after it’s filmed.
was on during the show’s first week in early December when she helped to
diagnose the sex of a pregnant woman’s baby.
“This is an amazing opportunity to connect with more women,” said an
enthusiastic Dehn. “Being on the show means I can highlight issues that affect
women and hopefully make a positive difference in their lives.”
lucky to have such amazing patients at Women Physicians. I love the idea of
being able to care for my patients and also be able to return to Orlando
regularly to film the show.”
Barb’s friendly, engaging personality helps her put patients at ease here at Women Physicians and has helped her connect with a larger audience on TV. She will be posting articles on the iVillageLive website and monitoring on-line chats on the day of filming. We hope you’ll tune in or go on-line to watch on Monday, January 8th, from 12 -1 pm on NBC or Bravo. For more information see: www.barbdehn.com
hope you will join us at our office for a free talk by Dr. Sutherland on
1/22/07 at 6:30 PM
of the doctors will be available for questions.
Light refreshments will be served.
Friends and family are welcome. RSVP to Lisa at 650-988-7557.
Many of you may have noticed the recent TV ads
discussing the link between HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) and cervical cancer.
You may have also heard that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
recently approved a new vaccine against HPV.
We think these are important topics and wanted to make sure you have all
HPV is transmitted primarily through genital
contact. In fact, it is the most
common sexually transmitted infection. There are an estimated 6.2 million new
cases of HPV infection each year. Among
all sexually active women and men, it is estimated that 50% will become infected
with HPV at some point in their lives. However,
the good news about HPV is that the majority of infections clear spontaneously.
What is the
Link Between HPV and Cervical Cancer?
When HPV infection doesn’t clear, it may
lead to precancerous changes of the cells on the cervix.
PAP smears screen for these changes.
In many cases, these precancerous changes can be successfully treated.
If untreated, these changes may progress to cervical cancer.
We are very fortunate in this country that most women are able to get
regular PAP smears. As a result,
cervical cancer is fairly rare here, with about 10,000 new cases a year and
about 3,700 deaths per year from cervical cancer.
(This compares with approximately 80,000 new cases and 73,000 deaths per
year from lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer deaths in U. S. women.)
In contrast, the worldwide statistics on
cervical cancer are quite different. There are an estimated 493,000 new cases
per year and about 274,000 deaths per year, making cervical cancer the second
leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Eighty
percent of these cases are in countries with very limited health resources,
where routine pap smears are rare or non-existent.
There are actually more than 100 subtypes
(called genotypes) of HPV. Fifteen
of these have been linked to cervical cancer.
A number of other HPV subtypes are associated
with genital warts, which, while benign (non-cancerous), can cause a great deal
of concern for a patient. Warts can
be successfully treated, although the treatment can cause temporary discomfort.
Who should get
the HPV Vaccine?
The HPV vaccine (called Gardasil) protects
against infection from four specific subtypes:
16, 18 (associated with about 70% of cervical cancers) and 6, 11
(associated with about 90% of genital warts).
Gardasil has been approved for use in females
between the ages of 11 and 26. It is
given as a three shot series with an initial vaccination followed by injections
2 and then 6 months later. Ideally,
it should be given before potential exposure to HPV, i.e. before the onset of
sexual activity, but it may be given after that time.
Studies to date have shown that the vaccine provides protection for at
least 5 years. It is not yet known
if booster shots would be needed after that time.
Studies are now being done regarding the HPV
vaccine in women over age 26 and in men, but at this time, the vaccine has not
been recommended for these groups.
What about PAP
It is most important to remember that the
recommendation for when and how often to get PAP smears has not changed for
women under thirty and would not change depending on whether or not one has been
vaccinated. Remember that the
vaccine does not protect against all the HPV subtypes that have been linked with
cervical cancer. Therefore, it is
still critical that women follow their doctor’s recommendations regarding
frequency of PAP smears. See the
final article in this newsletter for current pap smear guidelines for all ages.
Is the vaccine
available at Women Physicians OB/GYN?
Yes, we have had the vaccine since it was approved last summer. We have been busy vaccinating the young women in our practice. We are able to vaccinate any young woman who needs to start or complete their vaccination series. Please call for an appointment if you have questions or are interested in getting the vaccine. We would be happy to talk with you about it.
Do you have a loved one who has suffered with cancer?
Are you a cancer survivor yourself? Have
you been newly diagnosed with cancer? Do
you fear the very thought of cancer? Cancer
touches us all. Join us at Women
Physicians Ob-Gyn in taking a small step forward to do something about it.
This year Women Physicians Ob-Gyn is pleased to announce
that we are going to be a Team Captain
in the American Cancer Society Relay for Life on
June 2, 2007. And we need your help.
is asked to have a representative on the track at all times during the event.
Relay is an overnight event, up to 24 hours in length.
At Relay For
Life, teams commit to keeping at least one member walking the track at all
times—because cancer never sleeps. If necessary,
the doctors will walk all day and all night, but we hope you will be willing to
help us in the fight against cancer. Call
Lisa at 988-7557 if you are interested in participating.
We invite all
cancer survivors in our community to attend the opening ceremonies of the
American Cancer Society Relay For Life and walk with Dr. Sutherland, an 11 year
breast cancer survivor. We encourage you to enjoy the day, make new friends, and
celebrate the progress we have made in the fight against cancer!
at Women Physicians Ob-Gyn Medical Group may have spoken to you recently about
some changes in the guidelines for pap smears.
Doctors have been recommending annual pap smears for all women to
diagnose cervical cancer and pre-cancer for more than 50 years.
That advice has been ingrained into your brains.
Now that we have more understanding about what causes abnormal pap smears
and cervical cancer (e.g. the Human
Papilloma Virus), our recommendations are changing.
2003, the FDA approved HPV testing, in conjunction with Pap smear screening, for
primary screening of women over age 30. Both
the American Cancer Society and the American College of Obstetrics and
Gynecology have endorsed combined screening in women over age 30, under the
conditions that among women who test negative for both tests, screening should
not be repeated for 3 years. The
absence of HPV infection in conjunction with a normal Pap smear is very accurate
at identifying women at extremely low risk for cervical abnormalities. Screening
intervals in these women can be safely extended to 3 years.
HPV screening is not recommended for women under age 30 because HPV
infections, while common is this group, tend to clear up without any treatments.
Pap Smear Screening Guidelines by the American
The annual exam includes much more than just the Pap
We continue to recommend regular annual check-ups.
Information on this website is for educational and reference purposes only and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice.
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Women Physicians Gyn Medical Group