Category: General

Gynecologic Cancers–Recognize What’s Not Normal for You

We want to remind you of the risks of postponing screening tests and other preventive healthcare.
Research tells us that Americans fear cancer more than any other health event, even though heart disease is the leading cause of death. Much of this fear comes from the belief that cancer or cancer death is just a matter of random chance, something we are powerless to prevent. But let’s look at the actual facts about gynecologic cancers.

We refer to any cancer that begins in a woman’s reproductive organs as a gynecologic cancer. About 100,000 women are newly diagnosed…

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Over-the-Counter Birth Control—Is This a Good Option for You?

For the first time in the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given its approval to an oral contraceptive product that will be available without a prescription. We expect that Opill will begin to appear in pharmacies, grocery stores, and online in early 2024.

From the FDA press release (July 13, 2023):

“Today’s approval marks the first time a nonprescription daily oral contraceptive will be an available option for millions of people in the United States,” said Patrizia Cavazzoni, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “When used as directed…

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Dr. Sarah Whitehead, Obstetrician and Mom, Talks about Breast and Bottle Feeding

Few of our expectant moms have missed the message that breastfeeding has many benefits. But, while we continue educating expectant and new mothers about how good it is for baby, we don’t want to overwhelm them with the idea that breastfeeding—because it is natural—should always be easy to do. Some well-meaning breastfeeding advocates cite higher breastfeeding rates in third-world countries. Such statistics suggest that successful breastfeeding happens naturally in cultures where breastfeeding is the norm, and it happens despite inadequate healthcare and education for women.

Many suppose that, in developing countries like Botswana where I…

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Birmingham ObGyn Dr. Wendy Gregory Explains Menstrual Suppression—Life Without Periods!

Did you know, it is possible to safely lighten or eliminate your monthly period? The use of birth control pills or other hormonal birth control products to control the timing of your period or avoid it entirely is called menstrual suppression. Women can choose to suppress their periods for a short time or even for many months or years.

As a gynecologist for over two decades, I know that a monthly period and the discomfort that often accompanies it never happen at a convenient time in a woman’s life. As a busy mother of two, I understand the frustration…

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An Obstetrician’s Reflections on New Dads

One of the great privileges of our work as obstetricians is the opportunity to witness, again and again, the moment when a man becomes a father. During the pregnancy, he waits in a supporting role. He attends prenatal appointments and childbirth classes, assembles a crib, installs a car seat, and offers his partner whatever help and comfort he can. During the first minutes after the birth, he watches his partner hold their tiny infant against her skin while a nurse works to clear the baby’s nose and mouth and dry the skin. Someone calls out a few numbers (the…

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Coming Soon: Dr. MacKenzie Malek–We Welcome Her to Birmingham and Sparks & Favor

We are very pleased to welcome Dr. MacKenzie Malek to Sparks and Favor. We will begin scheduling her appointments within the coming weeks (watch for announcement on our social media pages). She will be seeing patients in early August!

Undergraduate Education: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Medical Education: University of Alabama School of Medicine
Residency: The Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine – Scott & White
Board Certified: American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Fellow, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists

Dr. MacKenzie Malek grew up in Huntsville, Alabama. Her interest in the sciences did not surprise…

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Do You Need a Pre-College Women’s Wellness Exam?

For the Class of 2023, graduation events are mostly behind you, and the time until move-in day doesn’t seem like nearly enough for all your summer plans. Whether you are starting college or taking your first step into a career, a wellness exam might be on your summer to-do list.

Colleges and employers vary in whether they require a formal physical exam or other health-related assessments. Most require some health information, but regardless, this is a perfect time to take charge of your own health. Changes in your environment, diet, stress, sleep habits, and exposure to…

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Mammogram Results Update:

There may be a delay in receiving your mammogram or other imaging results. The radiology practice that reads mammograms for our office and mammograms and other imaging for Brookwood’s Women’s Diagnostic Center recently had damages to its facility. No studies were lost, but it is taking time to recover and catch up on the backlog of reports.
We will be working diligently to release your results after receiving them from the radiologist.

Sign up for the patient portal so that your results can be released to you electronically instead of having to wait for a letter in the…

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Extending Your Biological Clock with Fertility Technology

As the average age of first-time mothers continues to creep upward, more women have questions about future fertility and fertility-extending technology. According to the CDC, this average age has reached 27.3 years (2021). And women sometimes delay their pregnancy plans far beyond this age for professional and personal reasons.
“Should I freeze my eggs?”
We hear this question in the office more frequently as more women become aware that the technology exists. In fact, the number of women seeking oocyte cryopreservation (freezing eggs) has increased dramatically over the last decade. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine no…

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From Dr. Favor–For Colorectal Cancer Screening–45 is the New 50!

We understand that, through a large part of her life, her gynecologist may be the only physician a woman sees every year. While our focus is your reproductive health, we want you to be well-informed about other health issues you may face now or in the future. Colorectal cancer is one of these risks.
Despite the fact that these cancers are highly preventable and very treatable in earlier stages, they are the third leading cause of cancer deaths…

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