Two in one
OB/GYNs are basically experts in two different but related areas – obstetrics and gynecology. Obstetrics is concerned with the health of an expectant woman, the delivery, and monitoring the health of the newborn, whereas gynecology deals with the female reproductive health among many other issues relevant to women. To be able to effectively diagnose and treat issues concerned with women’s reproductive health, most doctors choose to simultaneously specialize in obstetrics and gynecology. An expert San Antonio OB/GYN will have the required training and skills in both fields, in order to properly assess and care for their patients..
Aside from the science of midwifery and child delivery, there are numerous other concerns that an obstetrician takes care of. The scope of their duties ranges from caring for a mother and her unborn child right through the pregnancy until the child is born. During this period, numerous situations might arise concerning either the mother’s health or that of the unborn/newborn child. The obstetrician is required to go out of their way and provide patients with a warmer, more comfortable and intimate experience.
During pregnancy, an obstetrician will run many tests including imaging procedures, ultrasounds, and blood tests, to ascertain that the foetus is healthy and developing well. According to an experienced San Antonio OB/GYN specialist, the mother is also briefed on what to expect during childbirth and advised on which lifestyles to adopt to promote a healthy baby. The obstetrician’s duties after childbirth are monitoring the health of both mother and child, and where necessary, referring them to other specialists for help. For instance, a mother experiencing postpartum depression may be referred to a psychiatrist.
AN OB/GYNs gynecological duties include all issues associated with the reproductive health of a woman, including breasts. Most of a gynecologist’s duties are related to early detection and preventive care, for example, breast exams, pap smears, and other tests that monitor the hormonal levels of a woman. Additionally, an OB/GYN may also perform surgical procedures like colposcopies, or biopsies on the female reproductive organs. In case any health problem is detected, an OB/GYN will refer the patient to the relevant specialist for further diagnosis and treatment. For example, a gynecological
oncologist deals with cancers of the reproductive system.
Obstetrics and gynecology require extensive training before one can legally practice. After graduating from medical school, a student will have to participate in an OB/GYN residency as a generalist or a specialist in one of four areas: reproductive endocrinology and infertility, female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, gynecologic oncology and maternal-fetal medicine. The residency program takes about three to eight more years. After completion, one is required to sit for an exam focusing on their specialty in order to become licensed and begin practice.
An OB/GYN will find themselves in high-pressure situations related to childbirth, and other emergencies that require them to stay calm under pressure, work efficiently and show empathy and compassion. They must have very good communication skills to enable them to effectively deliver complex information in an easy-to-understand manner for their patients. Most procedures are quite uncomfortable and one will need the skills to constantly reassure the patients and make them feel comfortable. The work of an OB/GYN needs long hours of preparation in many different settings including private practices, women’s health clinics, and hospitals.