LEADING OB/GYN TEACHING ORGANIZATION APPROACHES BEST WAYS TO EFFECTIVELY DIAGNOSE AND TREAT COMMON UTERINE CONDITION
(Newstream) -- According to a new teaching module recently released by the Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO), physicians should consider alternatives to the dilation & curettage (D&C) procedure for the diagnosis and treatment of menorrhagia, also known as excessive menstrual bleeding. The D&C procedure entails the scraping of the lining of the uterus.
The teaching monograph, "Clinical Management of Abnormal Uterine Bleeding," part of APGO's educational series on Women's Health Issues, states that newer surgical techniques, such as hysteroscopy with endometrial biopsy, which uses a tiny lighted tube to look inside the endometrial cavity, and endometrial ablation, which removes the uterine lining through the use of heat or freezing, provide better options for caring for women with this condition.Although D&C is still one of the most common surgical procedures used to diagnose and treat excessive menstrual bleeding, with an average of 220,000 performed each year, the monograph recommends that physicians consider newer, more effective surgical treatments.
"As a diagnostic, D&C does not give us the most accurate picture of the cause of the heavy bleeding," said Roger P. Smith, MD, professor, vice chair and program director at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Missouri-Kansas. "In addition, as a treatment method it often only provides temporary relief from heavy bleeding, and may need to be performed repeatedly to control the condition. We encourage physicians to explore newer options that can provide women with longer term satisfaction." D&C remains an appropriate choice for women who wish to maintain fertility.
Excessive menstrual bleeding (EMB) is a debilitating and common medical problem that adversely impacts the daily activities of women. More than 10 million American women suffer from the condition, and approximately one-third of annual outpatient gynecologic visits are for the evaluation of EMB.
"In many cases new diagnostic and treatment options for heavy menstrual bleeding are replacing older, less effective therapies," said Dr. Smith. "We, as physicians, have a responsibility to be thoroughly familiar with new therapies and to consider them for patients when appropriate."
The publication, titled Abnormal Uterine Bleeding, is the seventeenth in a series of educational modules designed for use by faculty who teach women's primary and preventive care to medical students and residents. The Abnormal Uterine Bleeding module was made possible by an unrestricted grant to the APGO Medical Education Foundation from GYNECARE Worldwide, a division of Ethicon, Inc., a Johnson & Johnson company.
The complete teaching module includes a study guide, a self-assessment quiz, case studies with relevant discussion and management points, and a set of support slides that condense pertinent study guide information for use in presentations. After successful completion of this self-study program, participants are eligible for a maximum of 1.5 hours in Category 1 credit toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award.
One copy of the module is distributed free-of-charge to all APGO members and institutional departments. The monograph only is distributed free-of-charge to 38,000 fellows and junior fellows in the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, to all members of APGO and the Council on Resident Education in Obstetrics and Gynecology (CREOG), and to members of the American College of Osteopathic Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOOG). Additional copies may be ordered through the APGO Web site at www.apgo.org or by calling the APGO office, (410) 451-9560, for an order form. APGO member cost for the complete teaching module is $150/members; $250/non-members. The monograph only is $5/members; $7/non-members.
Widespread appeal and popularity of the series has led to its use by obstetrician-gynecologists, psychiatrists, family medicine physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and other health care providers.
Other modules in the Women's Health Issues series include: The APGO Educational Series on Women's Health Issues was developed to ensure the highest standards of obstetric and gynecologic medical education.
The Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics represents academic obstetrician-gynecologists in the United States and Canada. It seeks to advance and improve the study, teaching methods and research activities that promote excellence in the training of health care professionals who care for women.