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Gianna Center Services

Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a common condition in which the special cells that make up the lining of the womb have implanted abnormally outside of the womb. These implants bleed with each period, often causing the typical symptoms of severe cramps, low back pain during the period, changes in bowel movements or bowel pain and pain with intercourse. Many women do not realize that if they are taking high doses of painkillers like Advil or Motrin during the period, miss work or school due to their period pain or have vomited or fainted due to pain, there is a very good chance that they have endometriosis. Endometriosis can also be a hidden cause of infertility.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for severe menstrual cramps are dissatisfied with the care they received. They express concern that no effort was made to identify the underlying cause of their symptoms and rather, the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive. Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize these symptoms may be a sign of endometriosis. They educate the patient about the functions of her body, and what has “gone wrong” when endometriosis is present. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasounds of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment options, which may be medical or surgical, are discussed, depending on the patient’s goals.

Hormonal contraceptives are not used to treat endometriosis, as Gianna physicians believe better alternatives – with less risk and fewer side effects – exist.

Patients interested in finding out whether symptoms might be a sign of endometriosis or who are looking for an alternative to hormonal contraceptives to manage their painful periods are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

General Gynecologic Care

Gianna affiliates offer specialized gynecologic and reproductive healthcare using natural, restorative alternatives to hormonal contraceptives and conventional infertility treatments. Gianna doctors also provide routine gynecologic and reproductive healthcare, such as annual gyn exams, pap tests, breast cancer screening, STD screening and more. Gianna doctors treat women of all ages and for any gynecologic question or problem. Patients interested in receiving the general gynecologic care are encouraged to schedule an initial appointment at their local Gianna Center.

Hormonal Abnormalities

The normal menstrual cycle has a regular pattern that should be similar month after month. Periods should occur every 24-35 days. Bleeding should last no more than 8 days. Premenstrual syndrome should be mild and last no more than 3 days.

Menstrual cramps should be mild-moderate and easily managed with over-the-counter medicines. Symptoms that do not meet these descriptions may be a sign of a hormonal abnormality and should be evaluated to identify the underlying cause of the abnormality. Depending on the hormonal abnormality, these symptoms may indicate that a woman is at risk for infertility or miscarriages, has an increased risk of cancer, indicate that menopause is approaching prematurely, or in some cases indicate the presence of a hormone-secreting tumor.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for concerns about their hormones are dissatisfied with the care they received. They express concern that no effort was made to identify the underlying cause of their symptoms and rather, the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive. Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize these symptoms as a sign of an underlying health problem and start by identifying the cause of the symptoms. They educate the patient about the functions of her body and what can go wrong to cause the symptoms. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasounds of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI.  Once a diagnosis is made, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying problem to restore health and normal function.

Patients interested in finding out whether or not their symptoms indicate an underlying hormonal abnormality, or who are looking for alternatives to hormonal contraceptives, are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Fertility

One out of every six couples will have difficulty becoming pregnant or maintaining a pregnancy. The realization that the conception of their child may not occur as easily as hoped is one of the most emotionally painful circumstances that couples may face in their life together.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Couples who have sought treatment for infertility at fertility clinics are often dissatisfied with the care they received for a variety of reasons. They complain that very little was done to attempt to identify the underlying causes of their infertility before they were encouraged to begin aggressive interventions, such as intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization (IVF).  Couples report misgivings about strong medications and invasive procedures. The average cost of a single cycle of in vitro fertilization, based on national data is $12,400, not including the cost of medicines. They are often not told that on average 4 out of every 5 embryos created by the IVF process will be destroyed. They are not counseled that they may end up with leftover embryos — their children — and agonize over the difficult decision of what to do with them. Finally, many are not told that some interventions, such as in vitro fertilization, pose significant risks to the child if they are successful in achieving a pregnancy.

According to the CDC:

  • 39% of IVF pregnancies result in multiple births.
  • 33.2% of babies conceived through IVF are born preterm.
  • 27.8% are low birth weight.  

Although ART helps millions of infertile couples to achieve pregnancy, it is associated with potential health risks to both mother and infant. Because multiple embryos are transferred in the majority of ART procedures, ART often results in multiple-gestation pregnancies and multiple births. Risks to the mother from multiple births include higher rates of cesarean deliveries, maternal hemorrhage, pregnancy-related hypertension, and gestational diabetes. Risks to the infant include prematurity, low birthweight, infant death, and elevated risk for birth defects and developmental disability (4–18). Further, even singleton infants conceived with ART have a higher risk for low birthweight and prematurity than singletons not conceived with ART.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center, however, view infertility as a symptom and start from the fact that there is a reason that a couple is not conceiving and if adequate efforts are made to identify all of the factors which contribute to a couple’s infertility, medicines and interventions can then be implemented which correct the underlying problem, restore health, and allow the couple to conceive naturally rather than introducing a procedure like IUI or IVF. The potential contributing problems are usually multifactorial and may be on the woman’s side, the man’s side, or both. They may include subtle hormonal abnormalities that were missed in the basic testing done at the fertility clinic. It may be anatomic and curable with corrective surgery.  It may be an abnormality in ovulation itself. The list of contributing factors is extensive.  At a patient’s first visit, they are provided with an in-depth overview of what factors may be contributing to their underlying infertility or miscarriages, the approach to evaluating these factors and what treatment might entail.

For most underlying causes of infertility, the effectiveness rates of the Gianna approach are comparable to IVF. The rate of multiple pregnancies, preterm birth and low birth weight are at or below the national average for couples who conceive naturally and are markedly lower than pregnancies achieved through IVF.  And often, the evaluation of the couple reveals underlying health issues which, with correction, actually improve the woman’s overall health.

Patients interested in learning more are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Irregular Bleeding

The normal menstrual cycle has a regular pattern that should be similar month after month. Short cycles, missed periods, irregular periods, heavy bleeding, bleeding between periods – all of these are symptoms of an underlying health problem. Depending on the underlying cause, these symptoms can indicate subtle hormonal abnormalities that may put a woman at risk for infertility or miscarriages, increase her risk of cancer, indicate that menopause is approaching prematurely, or in some cases indicate the presence of a hormone-secreting tumor.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for irregular bleeding are dissatisfied with the care they received. They express concern that no effort was made to identify the underlying cause of their symptoms and rather, the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive. Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize these symptoms as a sign of an underlying health problem and start by identifying the cause of the symptoms. They educate the patient about the functions of her body and what can go wrong to cause the symptoms. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasound of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying problem to restore health and normal function.

Patients interested in finding out what their irregular bleeding might indicate, or who are looking for an alternative to hormonal contraceptives to manage their irregular bleeding, are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Menopausal Therapy

As women transition toward menopause, many experience irregular cycles, abnormal bleeding, hot flashes, night sweats, painful intercourse and many other symptoms. Doctors at the Gianna Center specialize in the use of bio-identical hormones to manage these symptoms, which are often due to the hormone deficiencies that develop at this stage of life.

Patients interested in understanding their menopausal symptoms and managing it with bio-identical hormones are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center.  For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Natural Family Planning Education

Many couples are not aware that modern methods of natural family planning are 99.5% effective when used to avoid pregnancy.  This is comparable to any of the artificial forms of birth control available, but without the side effects and risks associated with the long-term use of hormonal contraceptives.  The Gianna Center specializes in a natural family planning method called the Creighton Model System. The fertility chart used to document the biomarkers of the couples fertility can also be used to monitor a woman’s health, with Creighton teachers trained to recognize abnormal patterns which may indicate underlying health problems.

Patients interested in learning more about the Creighton Model are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Menstrual Abnormalities

The normal menstrual cycle has a regular pattern that should be similar month after month. Short cycles, missed periods, irregular periods, heavy bleeding, bleeding between periods – all of these are symptoms of an underlying health problem. Depending on the underlying cause, these symptoms can indicate subtle hormonal abnormalities that may put a woman at risk for infertility or miscarriages, increase her risk of cancer, indicate that menopause is approaching prematurely, or in some cases indicate the presence of a hormone-secreting tumor.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for these menstrual abnormalities are dissatisfied with the care they received. They express concern that no effort was made to identify the underlying cause of their symptoms and rather, the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive. Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize these symptoms as a sign of an underlying health problem and start by identifying the cause of the symptoms. They educate the patient about her body, its normal functions, and what can go wrong to cause the symptoms. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasounds of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying problem to restore health and normal function.

Patients interested in finding out whether their menstrual cycles are normal, or if abnormal, what this might indicate, and patients who are looking for an alternative to hormonal contraceptives to manage their menstrual cycle abnormalities are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Natural Family Planning Education

Many couples are not aware that modern methods of natural family planning are 99.5% effective when used to avoid pregnancy. This is comparable to any of the artificial forms of birth control available, but without the side effects and risks associated with the long-term use of hormonal contraceptives. The Gianna Center specializes in a natural family planning method called the Creighton Model System. The fertility chart used to document the biomarkers of the couples fertility can also be used to monitor a woman’s health, with Creighton teachers trained to recognize abnormal patterns which may indicate underlying health problems.

Patients interested in learning more about the Creighton Model are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are common and can be caused by many different things, including subtle hormonal abnormalities or the presence of endometriosis. Some cysts can indicate a serious health problem such as cancer.

Depending on the kind of cyst, they may place a woman at increased risk of experiencing infertility when she tries to conceive.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for recurrent ovarian cysts are dissatisfied with the care they received. They express concern that no effort was made to identify the underlying cause for their recurrent cysts and are troubled that the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive. Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize that recurrent ovarian cysts may be a sign of an underlying health problem and start by identifying the type of cyst and possible hormonal causes. They educate the patient about the functions of her body and what can go wrong to cause recurrent cysts, as well as their implications for her future fertility. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasounds of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying problem to restore health and normal function.

Patients interested in further evaluation for recurrent ovarian cysts, or who are looking for an alternative to hormonal contraceptive, are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Post-Partum Depression

After the birth of a baby, women experience a dramatic hormonal shift that can trigger prolonged severe symptoms such as depression, anxiety, strange thoughts, loss of interest, and feelings of guilt or worthlessness. 

If these symptoms persist beyond the initial week of baby blues, it can become a very serious, even debilitating condition for new mothers.  Gianna doctors specialize in the management of post-partum depression, using conventional supportive measures.  In addition to the usual treatment options, however, they also use bio-identical progesterone to alleviate the symptoms caused by the drop in progesterone after delivery. Symptoms can improve dramatically and quickly after even a single dose of progesterone.

Patients interested in talking with a Gianna doctor about any of the symptoms they may be experiencing after the birth of their baby are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Premenstrual Syndrome

Many women experience bothersome symptoms in the days and weeks before their menstrual period begins. There are more than 90 different symptoms that have been described as part of premenstrual syndrome. Some of those symptoms include irritability, fatigue, depression, low mood, bloating, weight gain, breast tenderness.  For some women, the symptoms are so severe that they become debilitating. Normal PMS would be described as mild to moderate and should not last for more than 3 days.

What women often don’t realize is that these bothersome symptoms might indicate an underlying hormonal deficiency, called a luteal phase deficiency. This deficiency is not only responsible for their bothersome symptoms, but could actually increase their risk of a miscarriage if they became pregnant.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Many women who seek treatment from their gynecologist or family doctor for their PMS symptoms are dissatisfied with the care they received. They are not told about the possible presence of a luteal phase deficiency and its implications for their future pregnancies. They express concern that the doctor recommended simply “covering up” the symptom by suppressing the natural menstrual cycle with a hormonal contraceptive.

Women worry about the side effects of hormonal contraceptives and especially about the increasing evidence that long-term use of hormonal contraceptives increase their risk of certain kinds of cancer, such as breast cancer.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center recognize severe or prolonged PMS symptoms as a sign of a possible luteal phase deficiency of the hormones estradiol and or progesterone. They educate the patient about her body and what happens when she has a luteal phase deficiency. Testing may include hormonal tests, ultrasounds of the uterus and ovaries and sometimes more advanced imaging such as MRI. Once a diagnosis is made, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying problem to restore health and normal function. This results in improvement in PMS symptoms and a comprehensive plan is developed for when the patient begins to try to conceive a pregnancy, with the goal of preventing miscarriages due to a luteal phase defect.

Patients interested in finding out whether their PMS symptoms are normal or abnormal, what their symptoms might indicate, or who are looking for an alternative to hormonal contraceptives to manage PMS are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

Recurrent Miscarriage

One out of every six couples will have difficulty becoming pregnant or will experience recurrent miscarriages. The loss of a child during pregnancy, especially when it happens repeatedly and without apparent explanation is one of the most emotionally painful circumstances that couples may face in their life together.

The Common Thread in Patient Experiences

Couples who have sought treatment for recurrent miscarriage typically seek care at fertility clinics.  The report being dissatisfied with the care they received for a variety of reasons. They complain that very little was done to attempt to identify the underlying causes of the problem before they were encouraged to begin aggressive interventions, such as intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization (IVF). Couples report misgivings about strong medications and invasive procedures. The average cost of a single cycle of in vitro fertilization, based on national data is $12,400, not including the cost of medicines. They are often not told that on average 4 out of every 5 embryos created by the IVF process will be destroyed.  They are not counseled that they may end up with left over embryos — their children — and agonize over the difficult decision of what to do with them.  Finally, many are not told that some interventions, such as in vitro fertilization, pose significant risks to the child if they are successful in achieving a pregnancy.

According to the CDC:

  • 39% of IVF pregnancies result in multiple births.
  • 33.2% of babies conceived through IVF are born preterm.
  • 27.8% are low birth weight.

Although ART helps millions of infertile couples to achieve pregnancy, it is associated with potential health risks to both mother and infant. Because multiple embryos are transferred in the majority of ART procedures, ART often results in multiple-gestation pregnancies and multiple births. Risks to the mother from multiple births include higher rates of cesarean deliveries, maternal hemorrhage, pregnancy-related hypertension, and gestational diabetes. Risks to the infant include prematurity, low birthweight, infant death, and elevated risk for birth defects and developmental disability (4–18). Further, even singleton infants conceived with ART have a higher risk for low birthweight and prematurity than singletons not conceived with ART.

The Gianna Alternative

Doctors at the Gianna Center, however, view infertility and recurrent miscarriage as a symptom and start from the fact that there is a reason that a couple is not conceiving or is having recurrent miscarriages.  If adequate efforts are made to identify all of the factors which contribute to the problem, medicines and interventions can then be implemented which correct the underlying problem, restore health, and allow the couple to conceive naturally rather than introducing a procedure like IUI or IVF.

Recurrent miscarriage is often caused by subtle hormonal abnormalities that were missed in the basic testing done at the fertility clinic.  At the Gianna Center, doctors specialize in diagnosing these abnormalities, beginning treatment in the pre-conception cycle and continuing treatment into pregnancy to decrease a couple’s chance of miscarriage.

At a patient’s first visit, they are provided with an in-depth overview of what factors may be contributing to their underlying infertility or miscarriages, the approach to evaluating these factors, and what treatment might entail.

Patients interested in learning more are encouraged to schedule an initial consultation at their local Gianna Center. For patients who do not have access to a Gianna Center in their community, several Gianna affiliates offer remote consultations by phone.

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