Women Physicians
GYN Medical Group
Care of Women by Women


WPMG Celebrates Our Silver Anniversary

25 Years of Serving Bay Area Women !


Newsletter #20 Index  -- 10/1/08

    Nurse Barb on View from the Bay

    Two Generations of Babies


    The Dash Diet

    Women Physicians' Speaker Program

    El Camino Hospital presents A Woman's Health Seminar




Nurse Barb  on View from the Bay

Women Physician's very own Barb Dehn NP, has been appearing regularly on ABC's View from the Bay, here in the San Francisco Bay Area. Barb is on "live" with Spencer Christian and Janelle Wang every few weeks talking about a variety of health issues.  "I love connecting one-on-one with my patients at Women Physicians, " says Barb, "and being on TV allows me to connect with a bit larger audience.  I've learned so much from each of the physicians here, and that’s helped me translate complicated health issues for the public.  The show is now open to the public and anyone can contact the station (www.abclocal.go.com) for tickets to be in the studio audience.  Barb says that it's fascinating to see how a live show is produced, and how personable and friendly the hosts are even off camera.  

Barb is actively recruiting women who would like to be interviewed for magazine or television interviews on every conceivable subject of interest to women.  If you'd like to be notified when interview or other health related opportunities arise, visit her blog, www.NurseBarb.com and register.  She will not distribute your contact information.


Two Generations of Babies

Dr. Sutherland has had the pleasure of delivering babies for 25 years.  In June of this year, she had the special treat of delivering baby Ethan. This was a particularly gratifying experience because she had delivered his father, Cory, almost exactly 25 years earlier in June of 1983.  Mother Desiree did a great job delivering her 7 pound 10 ounce bundle of joy. 






Cory, Desiree, Baby Ethan, and Dr. Sutherland




Blood pressure is the force of blood against artery walls. It is measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg) and recorded as two numbers—systolic pressure (when the heart beats) over diastolic pressure (when the heart relaxes between beats). Both numbers are important.


Blood pressure rises and falls during the day. When it stays elevated over time, then it's called high blood pressure, or hypertension. High blood pressure is dangerous because it makes the heart work too hard, and the high force of the blood flow can harm arteries and organs such as the heart, kidneys, brain, and eyes. Once it occurs, it usually lasts a lifetime. If uncontrolled, it can lead to heart and kidney disease, stroke, and blindness.


Hypertension frequently occurs without any symptoms whatsoever.  That is why it has been called “the silent killer”.  People who are not aware of their hypertension may be incurring damage to various organs in their body.  At every doctor’s visit, your BP (blood pressure) should be taken.  Many pharmacies have automatic BP machines that you can use and follow your own BP.


What causes hypertension? Most hypertension is considered “essential hypertension”, meaning there is no specific cause and therefore no treatment to cure it.  There are several factors that play a role in hypertension including smoking, obesity, lack of exercise, excessive alcohol consumption, stress, older age and genetics. In some cases, kidney, adrenal and thyroid disease may be the cause of hypertension and treatment of these underlying disease may actually cure it.


Blood pressure is categorized in the following way:


Systolic BP

Diastolic BP

Risk of Heart Disease



< 120

< 80


Good for you!





Your BP could be a problem. Watch what you eat, exercise more and  follow up with  your doctor.


140 or higher

90 or higher


You have hypertension and need routine medical follow up and possible medication treatment.


The risk of a heart attack and stoke doubles for every 20 point rise in systolic BP or 10 point rise in diastolic BP starting from a BP as low as 115/75.  People with blood pressure levels between 120/80 and 140/90 – levels once considered normal — have twice the risk of heart disease as those with normal blood pressure.  And, people with blood pressure above 140/90 — the definition of high blood pressure — have four times the risk of heart disease as people with normal BP.


    Hypertension affects more than 65 million Americans or 1 in every 3 adults. Another 59 million people have pre-hypertension.


    If you have hypertension or pre-hypertension you should:

        ·          Maintain a healthy weight.

        ·          Be moderately physically active on most days of the week.

        ·          Follow a healthy eating plan, which includes foods lower in sodium.

        ·          If you drink alcoholic beverages, do so in moderation.

        ·          If you have high blood pressure and are prescribed medication, take it as directed.


    There are many medications that are used to control and treat hypertension.  They, unfortunately, will not cure hypertension.  Frequently the first line therapy is with a simple diuretic.  There are many other classes of drugs that are used and, depending on your medical health and other personal factors, you and your doctor will decide which medicine is right for you.


    If you would like to learn more about hypertension, Web MD has a good site at:




The DASH Diet for Hypertension


With so many diets out there, it is often confusing as to which one we should follow.  For people with high blood pressure, borderline blood pressure, a family history of high blood pressure or at risk for high blood pressure, consider the DASH diet.  DASH stands for Dietary Adjustments to Stop Hypertension.


The basic tenets of this diet are really quite simple and logical.  This is not a fad diet. In fact, it is a very healthy diet that can be used by anyone wanting to improve their life style habits.  The diet is rich in potassium, magnesium and calcium.  It is low in saturated fat, cholesterol and total fat.  It emphasizes fruits, vegetables, fat-free milk and milk products as well as whole grains, fish, poultry and nuts.


The DASH eating plan has been proven in various studies to lower blood pressure. You can frequently see a response in as little as two weeks. The best response is seen in people whose blood pressure was only moderately high. But for people with more severe hypertension, the DASH diet can help improve response to medication and may allow them to decrease the amount of medication they take. In addition, the DASH diet can help lower cholesterol, and along with weight loss and exercise can reduce insulin resistance.


The DASH diet is not primarily based on a decreased sodium (salt) intake.  However, studies have shown that the greatest reductions in BP are in patients  on the DASH diet who also have the lowest sodium intake.  The diet is high in potassium, which is found in fruits, vegetables, some fish, and milk products.  Potassium not only lowers BP but also can help prevent kidney stones and bone loss (osteoporosis).


The key to reducing salt intake is making wise food choices.  Only a small amount of the salt we consume comes from added salt at the table and only a small amount of sodium occurs naturally in food.  Processed foods account for most of the salt and sodium Americans consume. READ FOOD LABELS to choose products lower in sodium. You may be surprised to find which foods are high in sodium.  If you eat the DASH way you will naturally consume less sodium, as there is less sodium in fruits and vegetables, which is the major portion of the diet. You will likely find the transition to a lower sodium diet fairly difficult especially if you make dramatic changes.  You will more likely succeed and continue with a low sodium diet if you make adjustments gradually allowing your taste buds to change.


You should be aware that the content of this diet plan has more daily servings of fruits, vegetables and whole grain food than you are probably used to eating.  The high fiber can cause bloating and diarrhea in some persons.  To avoid these problems, gradually increase your intake of fruit, vegetables and fiber.


The typical DASH plan is:


Servings per Day

Food Groups

1,600 calories/day

2,600 calories/day

3,100 calories/day













Fat-free or low fat milk and milk products




Lean meats, fish, poultry




Nuts, seeds and legumes




Fats and Oils




Sweets and added sugar


2 or less

2 or less



·           www.dashforhealth.com — an on-line program dedicated to teaching you to eat the DASH way.  With it you can track your progress, access various health calculators (like BMI [body mass index] and number of calories burned with exercise), view recipes and articles on nutrition as well as send in questions.  There is a charge for this service.

·           www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/hbp/dash/new_dash.pdf —a fairly good summary of the plan, along with some recipes.  This can be downloaded as a free PDF file called “Your guide to lowering your blood pressure with DASH”  

·           www.mayoclinic.com/health/dash-diet-recipes/RE00089 lots of DASH diet recipes and ideas

·          “DASH Diet Action Plan” — a book by Marla Heller, M.D., R.D. is available for purchase on Amazon.



Women Physicians’ Speaker Program


Women Physicians Ob-Gyn Medical Group enjoys serving the community with educational seminars on women's health.  We have given numerous talks for high schools, church groups and health fairs including the following topics:


·          Menopause and the menopause transition

·          Breast cancer

·          Cancer in women

·          Birth control

·          Sexually transmitted diseases

·          Planning for a pregnancy

·          Breastfeeding

·          Heart disease in women

·          Excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis)

·          Osteoporosis

·          Hormones through the ages

·          Infertility

Our usual format is a slide presentation followed by a question and answer session.  We can also tailor presentations to meet your specific needs.  An option which has worked nicely is for women to submit questions in advance thus making the session more interactive. 

If you have a group of 15 or more who would benefit from our expertise in women's health, please call our office manager, Randy, at (650) 988-7557 or e-mail him at info@elcaminoobgyn.com.  He will be happy to answer any questions you may have.  There is no charge for the presentation. 


El Camino Hospital presents A Women’s Health Seminar

 Save the date—Saturday, November 1, 2008, 8AM to 3PM!  

The Community Education department at El Camino Hospital has organized a Saturday seminar covering a broad range of women’s health topics on November 1, 2008 at the Cypress Hotel in Cupertino.  There will be a line-up of expert speakers covering topics including TM and yoga, heart health, genetics and cancer, care and compassion, nutrition, joint replacements for arthritis, aging and more.  The format will allow you to choose among topics of particular interest to you.  Lisa Rinna is the keynote speaker. 


Dr. Katherine Sutherland of Women Physicians Ob-Gyn Medical Group will be speaking on Intimacy and Sex for the Older Woman.  If this is a concern for you or if you would simply like to learn more about the topic, please join her for this talk. 


For more information on the seminar, go to www.elcaminohospital.org/womensfair or call 650-988-7703



















El Camino Women's Medical Group provides comprehensive Obstetric & Gynecologic care for patients throughout the Bay Area. Minimally invasive surgery, infertility, women's mental health, and the MonaLisa Touch are just a few of the specialized services we offer.
The MonaLisa Touch treatment is available at El Camino Women's Medical Group. Call the office (650-396-8110) or email Shar (Shar@ElCaminoWomen.com) for more information.
Serving Mountain View, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Atherton, Palo Alto, Redwood City, Burlingame, Saratoga, Cupertino, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Campbell, San Jose, Santa Clara, Silicon Valley, Milpitas, South Bay, East Bay, North Bay.
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