Acupuncture for Menopausal Hot Flashes

In Blog, Functional Medicine, Gynecology, Holistic Medicine, Integrative Medicine, Menopause by Dr. Gary Goldman

Hot flashes after menopause can be uncomfortable and sometimes embarrassing. Many women are declining effective therapy with estrogens due to appropriate concerns for the potential for adverse health effects from that therapy. A recent publication from the North American Menopause Society has again shown that acupuncture can be an effective therapy for common hot flashes in menopause. 2,500 years of success is a powerful testament! Read more here: http://news.doximity.com/entries/1473841

Can the IUD Increase the Risk of Breast Cancer?

In Blog, Breast Cancer, Gynecology by Dr. Gary Goldman

The progesterone-containing IUD’s (Intra Uterine Device) Mirena and Skyla may increase the risk of breast cancer, according to a recent study. Finnish researchers noted when these IUD’s were used to treat excessively heavy menstrual flow, there was a 19% increase in the rate of breast cancers, especially between the ages of 45-49. However, the research does not say that this type of IUD causes breast cancer. Researchers noted, “one limitation of our study was that women suffering from heavy menstruation may, in fact, represent a selected group of women who may have other risk factors for cancer, such as factors …

Gardasil to Prevent HPV Infections & Cervical Cancer

In Blog, Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Gynecology, Infections, Preventative/Primary Care by Dr. Gary Goldman

Gardasil – the HPV vaccine, remains shrouded in controversy, for reasons I can’t fathom. I am a gynecologist. I’m the doctor who does the pap smears and calls with bad news: there’s an abnormality, caused by having sex, that could lead to cancer. Next comes fear, regrets, gynecologic procedures or surgery, sometimes a cancer diagnosis, and long-term follow-up care… and most of this could be avoided – with the effective and safe vaccine against HPV we already have. Modern medicine has created wonderful opportunities for better health, but the two most important factors in lowering rates of death and disease …

Annual Vaccine Guidelines

In Blog, Infections, Preventative/Primary Care, Women's Health Topics by Dr. Gary Goldman

While we are on the subject of vaccines, here are the 2014 recommendations for vaccines for adults as per the CDC. There are many exceptions to these general rules based on confounding health conditions, so be sure to discuss with your doctor what is best for you. Influenza: yearly. For everyone. It should be coming out at the end of this month, and I recommend getting it as soon as it comes out. For pregnant women, I recommend the thimerosal-free, inactivated version – the only one I carry. I recommend it during pregnancy, regardless of trimester. TDAP (Tetanus, Diphtheria and …

Ebola Overview

In Blog, Infections, Obstetrical Care, Women's Health Topics by Dr. Gary Goldman

Ebola – a truly deadly and terrifying disease. The current outbreak in Africa has already claimed over 1,150 lives, and some believe this number is vastly underestimated. A patient in New York was recently admitted to Mt Sinai hospital for suspected Ebola after a recent trip to Africa – fortunately he did not have it. This outbreak has prompted quite a few inquiries in my office, so here are some facts: Ebola was first identified in 1976, in Africa. It is a virus spread through direct contact with bodily fluids, including blood, saliva, semen and even tears. It is not …

Cologuard as a Screening Test for Colon Cancer

In Blog, Cancer, Gynecology, Women's Health Topics by Dr. Gary Goldman

“You are due for a routine colonoscopy.” Not everyone’s favorite message from his or her doctor. But colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death from cancer, and colonoscopy to detect pre-cancerous lesions or early colon cancers has been demonstrated to significantly decrease this death rate. While most of my patients understand this advice as sound, the process of undergoing a bowel prep and having a colonoscopy remains a point of contention. Two days ago, the FDA approved a new non-invasive test that also screens for both early colon cancers and pre-cancerous lesions, just by providing a stool sample …

Breast Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, and the PALB2 Gene

In Blog, Breast Cancer, Cancer, Gynecology, Ovarian Cancer by Dr. Gary Goldman

A publication in today’s New England Journal of Medicine describes another important gene responsible for some hereditary breast and ovarian cancers. Dr. Antoniou and colleagues at Cambridge University found that mutations in the PALB2 gene were associated with a 9.5 times higher rate of breast cancer, and a 2.3 times higher rate of ovarian cancer in women. They also found an 8 times higher risk of male breast cancer. A family history of breast cancer was also important in calculating risk. If there was no family history, the lifetime risk of breast cancer was 33%. With a family history, the …

Should You Take a Daily Vitamin?

In Blog, Functional Medicine, Holistic Medicine, Integrative Medicine, Nutrition by Dr. Gary Goldman

Should you take a vitamin? This is a very common question in my office. If you are planning on becoming pregnant, then the answer is a resounding “Yes! You should take folic acid supplements to reduce the risks of fetal open neural tube defects, and possibly autism.” If you have been diagnosed with a vitamin deficiency, such as Scurvy, then you need to replenish your body’s stores – in that case, with Vitamin C, to reverse a potentially serious disease. But what about the average person with a fairly good diet? What does the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force say …

Do Birth Control Pills Increase the Risk of Breast Cancer?

In Blog, Breast Cancer, Cancer, Gynecology by Dr. Gary Goldman

Do birth control pills increase the risk of developing breast cancer? This question has been debated for years, with various studies concluding yes, no, and maybe. Yesterday a new study was published in Cancer Research by Elisabeth Beaber which you will surely hear quoted in the news. Her findings were as follows: recent users of the pill, longer-term users, users of higher dose formulations, users of triphasic style pills (pills that change their dose three times in one cycle), and users of certain brands containing particular types of progesterone had a greater risk of developing breast cancer. The good news …

How Should We Screen for Ovarian Cancer?

In Blog, Cancer, Gynecology, Ovarian Cancer by Dr. Gary Goldman

I am frequently asked about screening tests for ovarian cancer. This is a dreaded disease which strikes without warning, and can frequently be deadly. Wouldn’t it be great if we could detect it early and prevent its terrible consequences? You may receive the same emails that I do, presumably from Gene Wilder, encouraging women to have a CA-125 blood test; Gene’s wife, Gilda Radner, died from ovarian cancer. Unfortunately, it’s not a very good test. And what’s worse, it’s about the best test we have. We have studied a variety of blood tests, sonograms, and even screening by symptoms, as …