5 Important Updates in Female Health

Posted

Female Health at it's best: girls rule, plain and simple!  Let's support each other!

Female Health at it’s best: girls rule, plain and simple! Let’s support each other!

 1.  A new study just published in the January 2013 issue of Maturitas revealed that urinary incontinence (UI) does not go hand in hand with menopause.

 

 

Although conventional medical wisdom has often stated that urinary incontinence has an onset at (or worsening of symptoms at) menopause, a recently published metanalysis of the medical literature doesn’t support this now out-dated thinking.

 

Researchers looked at over 450 studies in the medical literature and found that there was no link between menopause and onset or severity of urinary incontinence.

 

This is so important for us to understand as women, because:

  • there is no reason to anticipate or project that urinary incontinence will worsen as you go through menopause…
  • and even MORE importantly, there is no reason to consider going on hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to help treat it.

 

This affects millions of women, and is important to be aware of, as HRT is a health risk and not to be taken without weighing the risks against the benefits.

 

I want to empower you to make your own best personal health decisions… so if your physician suggests HRT to help treat urinary incontinence…  reconsider.

 

Although UI does tend appear in adult women over age 45 and worsen with age, it is not specifically related to menopause and seems to have no link to the hormonal shifts that menopause brings… so treating UI with exogenous hormones makes no sense.

Never put any medications into your body that are unnecessary… and HRT for urinary incontinence is one of those medications that just isn’t warranted.

 

There are lots of alternative, natural and enjoyable things you can do to support your body as you make the powerful transition through menopause.

 

134 pages of medical, intuitive and powerfully transformative female health information!

Menopause is an amazing time that actually increases your power, increases your ability to access divine wisdom, and give you a whole new lease on life if you let it.

For more specific advice on hormone replacement, tons of holistic ideas on how to support your body physically and harness the power of this amazing transition energetically… download my fun and empowering female health ebook here.

 

 

Over active bladder (one of the most common forms of urinary incontinence) affects over 33 MILLION adults in the US alone!

So far, effective treatments include:

  • kegel exercises
  • biofeedback
  • scheduling urination
  • anticholenergic medications
  • and now… botox?

 

Yep!

2.  Botox was just approved to help treat overactive bladder — injecting botox into the bladder muscle causes it to relax, increasing the organ’s storage capacity.

 

Clinical studies have shown that botox treatment in the bladder significantly reduced episodes of urinary incontinence – patients treated with botox had up to 2 less incontinent episodes per day.

 

Is this right for you?

If you fail all other forms of UI treatment, it might be worth looking into.

Although there are risks and side effects to any treatment, I definitely would recommend the local treatment of a botox injection over the systemic risks of HRT exposure.

 

 

3.  One last thing you’ll be hearing about as it hits the store shelves this fall:  the first over-the-counter treatment for overactive bladder is a transdermal patch called Oxytrol. 

 

Tested in 5,000 women before earning FDA approval, you should know that this is actually a prescription medication that is now being put into a skin patch and sold over the counter.  While some folks are thrilled that women can now privately treat their own overactive bladder without going in for professional evaluation, others (like myself) are not so sure.  With so many wonderful things you can do to support your bladder naturally (working on toning pelvic floor muscles, scheduling elimination and biofeedback) I’m not fully on board with the jump-to-using-a-Rx-med approach.

 

Even though this is a skin patch, the drug is delivered to your entire body and you do see systemic side effects such as constipation and dry mouth.  So it’s important to know all of your options and something I wanted to include in this female health update — I love informing my readers of upcoming health news!

 

You’ll see the Oxytrol skin patch hitting your local drug store in the fall of this year.  You read it here first!!!

 

 

4.  And while I’m on the topic of female health, might as well talk about uterine prolapse too!

 

With all of the commercials out there asking you to sue your doctor if you’ve had a mesh implant… and all of the complications that can arise from the surgery, I wanted to share with you a surgical alternative for mild prolapse.

 

Enter the sea sponge!

 

Jade and Pearl offer reusable all natural sea sponges in different sizes… sized anywhere from teeny tiny  to large.  This is a great natural and eco-friendly alternative to traditional pessaries sold at medical offices.

The sponges can be trimmed to size for the ultimate in adjustability and comfort, and you can use and reuse the same sponge for up to six months!

The larger sea pearls for prolapse will support your uterus, relieving pressure on your bladder and preventing those pesky bladder infections that become an endless cycle of antibiotics and resistance.

 

The sea sponge is a great alternative to mild to moderate prolapse.  I would not consider a surgical option unless the prolapse was severe and you’ve run through all your other options first.

 

Sea sponges are also great for all women to treat a yeast infections… you can use all natural plain yogurt or your favorite anti-yeast remedy and simply apply it all over the sponge before insertion.  This will hold your treatment in place much longer then just depositing a cream or suppository alone.

 

I hope that reaches some folks out there who are just beginning to notice signs of early uterine prolapse (pelvic pressure, yeast infections, bladder infections, etc…) and hope that the sea sponges can help support your uterus against the effects of gravity.

 

5.  Want more female health ideas?

 

I’ve got a pinterest board full of them waiting for you!

 

Click on over here to follow my female spirit pinboard!

 

 

xoxoxox, Laura

 

 

6 Responses to “5 Important Updates in Female Health”

  1. Vicki

    Doc, I cannot believe this is today’s post. I am dealing with the worst case of bladder pain and frequent urination that will not go away. It hurts and is so annoying. Have a regular doc appointment today. I don’t think it’s an infection. Just a very irritated bladder wall. Allen has me on Albaplex and drinking water with baking soda. Helps but I am still miserable. Should I ask doc about Botox? Those sponges look interesting. It does help if I hold my jelly belly. Now I know why they gave my kitty pain meds for bladder problem.
    So grateful to have all this great information from you. Thanks so much. Hugs and love.

    • Laura Koniver, MD

      Hi Vicki!

      What you are describing sounds way more like interstitial cystitis or a bladder infection… I’m glad you are going to your doc to get it checked out. Botox would not help with this at all, that is for urinary incontinence. Sounds like something (whether a bacteria or something else) is irritating your bladder/urethra and causing pain and urgency. It is TOTALLY annoying I agree! I know you’ll feel better after your physician can rule out a UTI and get you more comfortable with what is going on!!! Thanks for your comment! Keep me posted on how you are doing…xoxoo, Laura

  2. Jonathan

    Dear Laura,

    In regard to bladder incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse and pelvic pain (like Vicki’s) there’s one very important factor that needs to be mentioned: Humans were designed to squat for bodily functions. The daily use of the sitting position for defecation, damages the pelvic floor over time. The pudendal nerve is stretched and injured so the brain loses control of the bladder. Nerve damage also can be very painful. And chronic straining on the toilet (which has become so normal that it’s not even considered straining) can eventually cause a variety of hernias, collectively called “pelvic organ prolapse.”

    Rather than go into too much detail here, I would refer your readers to a site that fully explains the whole phenomenon: http://www.naturesplatform.com/health_benefits.html . Squatting has implications for the colon, the prostate, for childbirth and for many ailments whose cause has baffled the medical profession. The site also has ways to squat without buying anything. If you’re flexible and not too heavy, you can squat right on the toilet seat. There’s also a DIY squatting device described on the FAQ page (question #6).

    Thanks, Laura, for your openness to new approaches that resonate with your flawless intuition!

    • Laura Koniver, MD

      Thanks Jonathan! This is very interesting and great information. I’ll never ever forget my experiences using a squat-style toilet when I travelled to Japan, that’s for sure, lol! It really is a different feeling altogether and I can see how the added pressure from the deep squat plus the positioning of the thighs against the abdominal wall would decrease the amount of strain on the pelvic floor… thanks for sharing the link!

      On another note, I had a reader email me a link to a resource for pelvic floor strength building — this blog hosts lots of different resources/exercises for strengthening the pelvic floor: http://www.alignedandwell.com/katysays/category/pelvic-floor/

      Thank you dear readers for sharing additional resources for others to find… you make my blog a better place! xoxo, Laura

  3. Vicki

    Thanks Laura and Jonathan for this information. Remember my Mom used to keep a stool in the bathroom to help her. Was made out of old cans and covered with cloth :) A source of laugther for our family. But sure not funny now. Still working to resolve my problem. Seems like a minor problem but it surely isn’t. Two nights with little sleep and probably more of the same tonight. Not sure where to go from here. Your input helps lead me in the right direction. Best regards.