Many women do not know what type of doctor to seek when they are dealing with health issues. And many young women coming of age who need to begin worrying about their reproductive and sexual health are even less familiar with the options that are available to them. Of course, this can be extremely problematic for women all over the country and right here in Austin, Texas. While there are numerous different types of medical specialists whose care you may seek out, the primary physicians for female reproductive health are obstetrics and gynecology. Get to know more about the difference between them so that you can seek out the care of top rated gynecologists and obstetricians in the Austin, Texas area when you need care.
Obstetrics as a field of medicine is a specific specialty within the realm of care for adult women. This medical field focuses on child birth, pregnancy, and a woman's reproductive system as it relates to bearing children. Obstetricians are trained surgeons who have received extensive training in medical school as well as residencies and surgical internships and the like. They often work at or in association with hospitals as the delivery of children, particularly those that require surgery are performed in a hospital setting rather than a private medical office setting.
If you are pregnant or are planning and trying to get pregnant, an obstetrician can help you with the process. They perform exams during pregnancy, can run fertility tests, and can monitor and treat pregnancy related conditions like preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, and the like.
If a baby is breach or otherwise in distress, they are able to perform Cesarean procedures to surgically deliver the child. Obstetricians can also perform procedures such as hysterectomies, tubal ligations (having the fallopian tubes closed to prevent pregnancy), and oophorectomies to remove female reproductive organs for various health reasons.
A gynecologist is another medical specialty that deals with women's health issues and reproductive health. Gynecologists are also surgeons but rather than focusing entirely on pregnancy and childbirth, they deal with a wider range of women's reproductive issues, illnesses, and health. Standard yearly pap smears are performed by a gynecologist to ensure that a woman's reproductive system is healthy and to screen for cervical cancer and the like.
If you are concerned about sexual dysfunction, painful intercourse, abnormal periods, or need an examine and tests for sexually transmitted infections, then it is the care of a gynecologist that you should seek. Some gynecologists also provide prenatal care, and many doctors may be double certified in obstetrics and gynecology to provide more comprehensive women's health care.
Now that you know more about the differences between obstetrics and gynecology, you can seek out the care of the best doctor for your medical situation and be sure that your reproductive health is a priority in your life.