By Jeanne Novas, MD 

Let’s begin with the new guest limitations at the hospitals: Moms will be allowed only one visitor during their birth and after. They will ID banded and there is no substituting. For now, a certified Doula is also allowed. We just heard New York MANDATED hospitals allow 1 visitor, so important for moms in labor! Please be aware visitors are often restricted almost every year during the flu season. Be aware we have 2 hospitals to choose from if there are any changes. We definitely DO NOT recommend home deliveries because of these policies. The American College of OBGYN has confirmed data that home deliveries result in higher maternal complications and newborn deaths and complications.

The hospitals have narrowed their entry points away from the ER and are screening all entrants, including all staff. Visitors are limited. Routine health care is canceled – no mammograms, colonoscopies or elective surgeries for now. Tours and classes are canceled, but the hospital is working on providing online group classes. We will keep you posted. The labor and delivery units are separated from the rest of the hospital and all have isolation areas. They are taking thorough measures in sanitizing and ventilating to protect you and your newborn.

 By Jeanne Novas, MD 

As the COVID-19 evolves and quarantine measures escalate, we continue to care for you in-office and hospital, and per phone (847) 304-0044 press #1 for the nurse. After hours, you can have our service page the doctor with questions regarding flu and COVID-19.

We are taking special measures for your safety:

Enhanced cleaning and wiping down surfaces, no sick/coughing employees and patients in office, social distancing, recommend patients limit children and others attending their appointments. Our hospitals are well prepared for cases, including a drive-thru testing facility open at Good Shepherd Hospital. Call us for guidance: You must have fever/cough, have direct exposure, and/or travel to endemic areas to be tested by IDPH rules, and need a negative flu and respiratory panel before receiving COVID-19 testing. The American College of Surgeons is suggesting that “elective” surgeries be reconsidered as per patient and doctor. We do not currently see any reason to cancel elective care UNLESS YOU ARE SICK, but we will keep you posted. If you have traveled, please reconsider elective health care visits for 2 weeks after. We would urge you to continue your annual visits, procedures, and care with us per routine until further notice.

Helpful to Your Baby and Studies Confirm it’s Safe

Julie Dohr MDby Julie Dohr, MD

Numerous studies have looked at Tdap vaccination in pregnancy. This vaccine is given in your third trimester to help prevent pertussis in your baby after delivery. The vaccine boosts your immune system and those antibodies cross the placenta so the baby has them as a newborn.

Many people are worried about a relationship between autism and vaccines. A study was performed to follow babies who were born to moms who were vaccinated during pregnancy. This was a very large study – over 80,000 children were followed. After following the children up until age 6, the risk of autism was actually slightly less in the children whose moms were vaccinated.

We strongly recommend vaccinating against the flu and pertussis during your pregnancy. Ask us about it at your next visit.


 

 By Jeanne Novas, MD 

This year has been a severe flu year. Our local hospitals are restricting classes, tours and visitors. Many patients are hospitalized with influenza. Our hospitals are specially equipped to handle infectious cases.

In order to contain both flu and COVID-19 we recommend the following:

Wash hands frequently, use hand sanitizer and sanitary wipes especially in bathrooms, cover your cough, don’t touch your face. Avoid contact with others, handshaking. Throw out used napkins/tissues. Restrict travel for at least the next month especially with risk factors, pregnancy, including conferences and events. Masks are more for health care workers to protect them and to prevent transmission to others if you are coughing. Check the CDC (Center for Disease Control) website for latest info.

Julie Dohr MDby Julie Dohr, MD

Do you have pelvic pain, bad menstrual cramps or pain with intercourse?  Do you think you may have endometriosis?  There is a new drug that is very successful in treating endometriosis and its not a shot!  It is called Orilissa™, and is a daily pill. It has less side effects than some of the other drugs used to treat endometriosis. 

Make an appointment with us to discuss the treatment options.  You do not have to live in pain.


 

Julie Dohr MDby Julie Dohr, MD

With the legalization of Marijuana in many states, there has been an increase in patients reporting cannabis use during their pregnancy. What are the risks? How much do we know?

Cannabis use is associated with an increased risk of premature delivery and can negatively affect the baby’s growth. Placental abruption, where the placenta separates too early, is more common with cannabis use. Also, when the baby is born, there is a greater chance of the baby needing to go the intensive care unit.

Julie Dohr MDby Julie Dohr, MD

Dryness and pain with intercourse affects women in menopause due to the loss of estrogen in the vaginal area.

Companies are promoting laser therapy to treat this problem.  Laser therapy has shown to improve collagen and blood flow to the area and may be promising, however we don't know what the risks are to patients.  The FDA issued a safety warning in 2018, as there are not enough studies to show that there is no harm to women.

At this point, we at Novas, Dohr, Coll & Gadson Ob/Gyn Associates & Medical Spa recommend vaginal estrogen, oral osphena and vaginal DHEA help diminish these symptoms.  Make an appointment with your doctor to discuss what option is best for you.

We will continue to follow the newest data and update our patients!


 

Dympna Coll MD Dympna Coll, MD 

HPV is a virus that can cause genital warts and various types of cancer. HPV can spread through any type of sexual contact with someone who has HPV. Because HPV often has no signs or symptoms, a person can have the virus and pass it on without knowing.

HPV has been associated with cervical, vaginal, vulvar, anal, penile and throat cancer. Despite the known association between HPV and these cancers, the rate of vaccination in the United States remains low. The American College of Pediatrics and The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommend routine vaccination of girls and boys at age 11-12. The vaccination can be given as early as age 9 and up to age 26. It is more effective if given before becoming sexually active.

 By Jeanne Novas, MD 

A recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine strongly supports getting delivered at 39 weeks, even if your cervix is not so dilated.  After hearing so many negatives on “Pitocin,” and online medical sources promoting midwives and even home births, we now have good support that medical intervention and active management of your pregnancy promotes less complications, less cesareans, and better outcomes for baby as well.

We have offered that to our patients, despite some pushback from “online medicine”  and supporters of "Natural” childbirth.  Now we have even more evidence to support 39 week delivery.  We individualize your care, so be sure to talk to your doctor about this if you find yourself still pregnant at 39 and 40 weeks!

– Jeanne Novas, MD


 

Decreasing the Exposure for Your Baby

Julie Dohr MDby Julie Dohr, MD

The US Environmental Protection Agency has a chemical inventory of over 10,000 chemicals.  To focus efforts on reducing exposure of ones that could affect your baby’s brain development, Project TENDR (Targeting Environmental Neuro-Developmental Risk) was started.  

Possible potential toxic chemicals: 

  • Organophosphate pesticide (OP) - found as residues on some foods, and pesticides used at home
  • Polybrominated dephenyl ether (PBDE) - Found in house dust (old foam furniture), and in plastics for electronics and some fatty foods

  • Combustion-related air pollutants - Air pollution

  • Lead - In older homes and water and soil and in some ethnic products such as herbal remedies.
  • Mercury - Found in fish (usually larger fish
)
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) - found in foods, some fish (bottom feeders), meat and dairy products.

  • Phthalates - found in plastics

 By Jeanne Novas, MD 

We at Novas, Dohr, Coll & Gadson Ob/Gyn Associates & Medical Spa work very hard to keep our patients’ wait times to a minimum.  We combine services such as ultrasounds, bone scans, dietician consults, medications and blood draws together with the doctor visit for patient convenience.

However, we also have many emergency visits, and sometimes patients who just need a bit more time unexpectedly.  As OBGYNs, we are here 24/7 for our patients.  We strive to provide the most thorough and compassionate care, and do it in a timely manner.  Sometimes, that may mean a delay.