Practice News

April 2011

April 2011 image

2011 thus far has proven to be a busy time for the practice with March heralding in the International Day for Women.

Midwives Jane and Deanna have attended two meetings of the Gynae Practice Nurses group which was formed informally to meet and discuss practical management problems on a four to six weekly basis. The hosting practice arranges a guest speaker and afterwards the group adjourn for refreshments and nibbles before discussing mutual matters pertaining to obstetrical and gynaecological practice whether they be administrative or clinical.

Currently the Medicare requirement for accreditation of ultrasound practice has created the most discussion and WHS has jut received notification that it’s application for accreditation has been approved thereby ensuring that ultrasound scans performed at the practice are eligible for the Medicare rebate.

Jane and Deanna also attended a clinical symposium sponsored by Nestles which discussed ‘Drugs and Alcohol in Pregnancy’ and an ‘Update in Immunisation practice’.

Professor Svigos on the 20th March made a joint presentation with Dr Brian Wheatley, Medical Director of the Women’s and Babies’ Division of the Women’s and Children’s Hospital, to a group of secondary school students interested in overseas volunteer work, at the Piper Pavilion, Prince Alfred College. Dr Wheatley gave an account of his work in the Medical Corps International Nepal Fellowship operating on women in remote communities while Prof Svigos reported on his work in improving the obstetric care for women in Indonesia. Dr Wheatley and Professor Svigos were impressed by the number of interested young adults and their enthusiasm to become involved in these activities. The presentations were part of the Birthing Kits Workshop held under the auspices of ‘Insight’, the global health group of the University of Adelaide.

There has been a recent public campaign on awareness of ovarian cancer. Whilst the intention of the campaign is admirable unfortunately the vagueness of the symptoms said to be associated with ovarian cancer viz abdominal bloating, abdominal pain, increased abdominal size, feeling full quickly, unable to eat normally and pelvic discomfort, has led to some anxiety amongst patients and has resulted in a number of telephone enquiries. An excellent article appearing in the most recent Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology ( 2011;51:71-78) has concluded that there is a high prevalence of ovarian cancer symptoms in Australian women and because of this awareness campaigns will likely impact a large number of women who do not have ovarian cancer. (authors Pitts MK et al – m.pitts@latrobe.edu.au).

There are ovarian tumour marker blood tests that can be performed but these are not very accurate or specific and only pertain to certain types of ovarian cancer and these tests usually only become positive once the disease is well established.

Pelvic ultrasound similarly is not an accurate predictor of early ovarian cancer. Hence from a patient’ perspective a regular visit to the doctor with a discussion of any gynaecological symptoms supplemented by a pelvic examination and/or ovarian tumour marker tests and pelvic ultrasound with all their imprecision, remains the cornerstone of the detection of ovarian cancer at the moment.

Past Newsletters
April 2011
September 2011
March 2012
November 2012
June 2013
December 2013
September 2014