New Study Finds Breast Biopsies Could Need a New Approach

Breast cancer awareness is everywhere today—as it rightly should be. Breast cancer affects about 1 out of every 8 women in the United States during their lifetime and 232,000 new cases are identified every year. It’s no secret: breast cancer can be a killer. You probably know at least one woman (or man) who has battled the disease, or maybe you’ve been there yourself.

The medical community continues to research breast cancer and works tirelessly to find better ways to identify and treat the disease.  According to new research conducted by the Mayo Clinic, there may be cause for doctors to change yet another breast cancer screening tool to help identify potential cancers early. The biopsy is a procedure that uses a needle to collect cells from a mass inside the breast. These cells are then studied to determine their type and what risk they may carry for breast cancer later. (more…)



Most couples expect getting pregnant to be easy – until it isn’t. After months of trying, frustration and fear can run high and leave you with lots of questions. Finding the cause of infertility can be simple or complex and infertility treatments can vary depending on the cause. Helping you see those two pink lines may be as simple as timing sex during the month or taking medications to release an egg on schedule

Different Solutions For Men and For Women

For men, the most common issues are low sperm and general sexual problems such as erectile dysfunction (ED). For women, you might not be ovulating, or your tubes might be blocked. You might have hormonal imbalances, structural problems with your uterus or endometriosis that needs to be treated to boost your fertility. We won’t know until we look and explore your unique situation.

No Two Patients Are Alike

Because no two patients are alike, we will make sure that you have the proper exams to determine the cause of your problem. We offer in-office labs and minimally invasive testing without radiation exposure from x-rays or other imaging procedures. To make sure the path an egg takes to reach the sperm is clear, we use ultrasound technology and a special device called the FemVue Sono to rule out any problems. Procedures are customized to your unique situation and needs, so not every patient may have the same set of tests.

In the even that you need more advanced procedures like minimally invasive surgery, including hysteroscopy, myomectomy surgery or laparoscopy, you can feel confident with our skill and expertise. We also offer early referrals to fertility specialists for advanced ovulation procedures if we feel it’s right for you.

Early Detection Can Save Your Life: Why & How to Perform a Breast Self-Exam

Did you know that 40% of breast cancer cases are discovered by women who felt lumps during self-exams? It doesn’t matter if cancer runs in your family or not. Every adult woman over the age of 20 should do a monthly breast self-exam.

While mammograms do help in early detection of cancer before lumps form, breast self-exams help you to become accustomed to what is normal for your breasts so you can let your doctor know if anything looks or feels different.

Self-exams should not be a substitute for mammograms, screening and other detection, but combined with routine medical care, they can give you an advantage that could save your life. (more…)

Get Ready to Walk for Breast Cancer

Get Ready to Walk for Breast Cancer

avon walk for breast cancerChances are that you know someone who has been directly affected by breast cancer. Maybe it’s you–sitting there right now. Maybe you’re finishing treatment or have just been diagnosed and you’re hoping for a bright future ahead. There’s still much research to be done to win the battle against breast cancer, but I want to encourage you to be a part of that effort through the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. There are lots of great breast cancer awareness and fundraising events going on all across the country almost constantly, so Avon’s walk isn’t your only option, but it could be  a great way to join in the fight.

What is the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer?

Starting in September, 2014 walkers can trek up to 39 miles in a weekend while raising money for screenings, research, cancer support, education and more–but don’t worry–the walk is designed to be fun and interactive with great meals, lots of support from Avon’s volunteer staff and time with others who care about the cause.

Women and men who walk gather donations. These donations are used by Avon to fund breast cancer programs and offer treatment access to patients who may not have it otherwise–a key component of a healthy life and early detection. Since the walk started in 2003, more than $500 million dollars has been raised for the cause and helps underserved women get mammograms , research labs get important supplies, and low-income patients get transportation to and from medical appointments.

How can I get involved?

It’s easy! Visit the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer homepage and register for the city you’re closest to–or that you’ve always wanted to see and make it a trip to remember! You can choose from locations including Santa Barbara, Charlotte, Chicago, Houston, Boston and more. 80% of the money raised during the walk stays in the city where the walk is held.

I can’t walk very far–can I still participate?

Absolutely. There’s no requirement that says you have to walk the full mileage at the event. Just complete your fundraising efforts then come out and walk as long as you’d like–enjoying healthy meals, plenty of rest breaks, and a fun time along the way.

There is lots of helpful, inspiring information on the walk website–drop by and take a look at the videos and other inspiring details that will have you lacing up your walking shoes in no time. Plan your trip today!

Tips to prevent campus sexual assault

For most college students, the year is half over and a new semester will soon start. Most students are into the groove with classes, roommates, and the social scene and it can be easy to overlook a common danger for women—campus sexual assault. Thanks to the recent release of a Rolling Stone article featuring a rape on the campus of the University of Virginia, the topic has been driven front and center once again. (more…)

Tips to regain your sex drive

Finding relief for intimacy issues

What goes on in the bedroom is often a difficult subject to bring up at a doctor’s appointment.  Many patients are simply unsure of how to approach their physician with their sexual performance struggles.  Some people believe that sexual dysfunction is simply a part of aging or something that just has to be accepted.  When in reality, nothing may be further from the truth.
Sexual struggles for both men and women are not a normal part of the aging process.  There are a variety of factors that may influence sexual performance including mental stressors, marital problems and even pharmaceutical influences from medications.  In some cases, there may be a true physical development that alters the sexual response—like hormonal changes.   No matter the reason, suffering from romantic difficulties does not have to be a part of your life. (more…)

Facts & Myths About Fetal Alcohol Syndrome


Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is always a tragedy because it is 100% preventable by simply abstaining from alcohol during pregnancy.

You may have heard that the occasional glass of wine does not harm a developing fetus. But research by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that there is no known “safe” quantity of alcohol during pregnancy. There is also no safe time of day, nor type of alcohol, so the best course of action is to abstain completely.

Symptoms of this lifelong condition include growth problems in the womb and after birth, poor coordination, muscular problems, heart defects, and many issues with development of the face. FAS can also cause the child to experience delayed thought, speech, movement, and difficulty relating to others. Drinking alcohol while pregnant can cause a multitude of other problems with the birth process including miscarriage, premature delivery, and even death.

Due to the lifelong effects FAS has on an infant, women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant are encouraged to abstain from drinking. In the United States, half of all pregnancies are unplanned, and a woman may be pregnant for several weeks and not know it. Women who are not trying to become pregnant but who are sexually active and drink alcohol should use a form of birth control (condoms, the pill).

Unlike many pregnancy-related issues, prevention of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is simple. That is not to say that quitting drinking is easy for everyone. Group therapy and counseling can be very effective for helping women overcome alcoholism and provide a better quality of life for themselves and their child.

If you think you may need help controlling your drinking, Dr. Hessel would be happy to recommend a supportive program or other options. You’re welcome to stop by our offices at any time.


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