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What is urogynecology?

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Quick Answer

Urogynecology is the study and treatment of urinary and pelvic floor conditions in women, according to The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Doctors with this specialization treat sexual dysfunction, urinary tract infections, pelvic discomfort, constipation, incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.

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Full Answer

Female sexual dysfunction is a common condition that women bring to their urogynecologists, notes Baylor Health Care System. This includes a lack of interest in sex, the inability to have an orgasm or experience arousal, as well as discomfort during intercourse. Painful bladder syndrome, also known as interstitial cystitis, involves discomfort in the bladder and a recurring need to urinate.

Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when the ligaments and muscles supporting a woman's pelvic organs develop weakness, explains Baylor. Prolapse refers to these organs' moving out of their normal place. Typical treatments include a device to hold the organs in place or surgical remediation. Urinary incontinence, or the involuntary urination that takes place during stressful activities such as exercise or sneezing, also falls under the purview of the urogynecologist.

Another problem that shows up in the urogynecologist's office is complex fistulae, states Baylor. The fistula is a passageway between the surface of the body and an organ, or between two different organs. A common example is the development of a fistula between the vagina to the bladder, sending urine from the vagina and causing infections in one or both areas. Doctors provide surgical treatments for these passages

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