Archive for the ‘Women & Cancer’ category

Is a hysterectomy enough for endometrial cancer?

May 10th, 2009

Women who are set to undergo a hysterectomy due to pre-cancerous cellular changes may actually require a more thorough surgery. This was the conclusion of researchers at the University of Alabama, who studied 3,322 women from 1999 and 2008, with a focus on those diagnosed with pre-cancerous changes known as complex atypical hyperplasia (CAH). About half of the women who underwent hysterectomies were later found to have invasive endometrial cancer, meaning they should have undergone more comprehensive surgeries for their condition.



Progestin hormone for birth control

May 9th, 2009


Another highly-effective contraceptive method is progestin-only birth control. Learn about the different ways to take this hormone. Progestin-only birth control methods keep an egg from being released or causes changes in the uterus to prevent pregnancy. There are four progestin-only methods. The methods are very effective and reversible, and are often recommended for women who cannot take oestrogen, including women who are breast-feeding.



The implant is a thin plastic rod that releases progestin. It works for up to three years. The implant is placed under the skin in the upper arm by a trained healthcare provider. It can be removed by a trained healthcare provider at any time. Current medical studies list the implant as the most effective reversible birth control method.



An injection of progestin is given in the arm or buttocks. It works for up to three months, so four shots are needed each year. In some cases, a lower dose shot of progestin is also available. A healthcare provider ca tell you more about this option.



Progestin-only pills (also called mini-pills) are taken daily at the same time. They must be prescribed by a healthcare provider. Know what to do if you are late taking a pill or if you miss a pill. If this happens, a back-up form of birth control may be needed for a week or more.



The IUD (intrauterine device) is small, flexible and T-shaped. It is placed in the uterus by a trained healthcare by a trained healthcare provider. The IUD is one of the most effective birth control methods. It is reversible, which means it can be removed at any time by a trained healthcare provider. The progestin-only IUD causes changes in the uterus to help prevent pregnancy. The device works for at least five years. It may be recommended for women who have anaemia or heavy and painful periods. IUDs have thin strings that hang from the opening of the uterus into the vagina. These allow you to check that the IUD remains in place.

Copper IUD is another type of IUD. It releases a small amount of copper into the uterus. Copper makes it harder for sperm to reach the egg. The device works for at least 10 years. However, this type of IUD is often associated with heavier periods and cramping.

The IUD can be used by women who have never been pregnant or by women with a history of STIs or tubal pregnancy. It will not move from the uterus to any other part of the body. Well, there is a slight risk of device coming out of the vagina (expulsion). The IUD may not work in women who have an abnormally-shaped uterus. Progestin IUD may cause light periods or no periods at all (spotting is possible and normal during first three months).