Advanced Imaging & Procedures in Our Offices
The physicians at Women’s Care are committed to bringing comprehensive, technically advanced imaging and treatment options to our patients, as safely and conveniently as possible. To facilitate this we offer many screening and diagnostic procedures in our offices, eliminating separate registration procedures and additional scheduled appointments at remote locations. This includes common imaging modalities such as mammograms and ultrasound. This means less time running around, as well as more efficient and integrated care.
Gynecological ultrasound is used to examine the pelvic organs and can show:
- Uterus anatomy, including fibroid tumors
- Pelvic mass location, size, and shape
- Ovarian cysts
- The position of an intrauterine device (IUD)
- Ovulation status (treating infertility)
A Saline Sonohystogram (SIS) uses saline infused into the uterus during a transvaginal ultrasound to detect the presence of intrauterine lesions.
Screening mammography is the primary imaging modality for early detection of breast cancer because it is the only method of breast imaging that consistently has been found to decrease breast cancer-related mortality. Typically screening with mammography begins at age 40. A mammogram involves exposing the breast to x-rays. Routine evaluation includes obtaining two views (craniocaudal and mediolateral oblique) of each breast. Obtaining two views for each breast aids in distinguishing overlapping structures from true abnormalities.
A colposcopy is done when a Pap Smear shows changes in the cells of the cervix that could lead to cancer. Because a pap smear is only a screening test, the colposcopy provides more information about the abnormal cells. Colposcopy is a way of looking at the cervix through a special magnifying device called a colposcope. It shines a light into the vagina and onto the cervix. A colposcope can enlarge the normal view by 2-60 times. This allows our providers to find problems that cannot be seen by the eye alone. A biopsy may be taken of any areas that appear abnormal, and the biopsy provides a definitive diagnosis of exactly what is happening to the cells of the cervix.
A LEEP is performed to remove abnormal cells found during colposcopy. A LEEP uses a thin wire loop with an electrical current to cut away a thin layer of the cervix surface. This removes the abnormal tissue. The cervix heals with healthy tissue, but abnormalities can persist. Therefore, a follow-up pap smear may be required based on the final pathology. A LEEP can be performed in an office or in a hospital setting.
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) places sperm directly inside the woman’s uterus, and may be recommended when there is a low sperm count, difficulty ejaculating, or a narrow cervical opening, or if the couple’s infertility is unexplained. The male partner is usually instructed to obtain a semen sample by masturbating and ejaculating into a sterile container. The man should avoid ejaculating two to three days before collecting the sample. The semen is then prepared in a laboratory to separate the active sperm from the inactive sperm and seminal fluid. The process is similar if donor sperm is used.
IUI is usually performed 12 to 36 hours after the woman injects human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). During IUI, the woman lies on her back on an examination table with her feet in footrests. A speculum is inserted in the vagina and a long, thin, flexible tube is used to insert the prepared sperm sample through the vagina and cervix inside the uterus. This takes less than five minutes.