Benefits of Integrative Medicine
Integrative medicine has unique benefits for staying healthy and promoting wellness. Your comprehensive women’s health consultation will offer a range of options such as herbs, supplements, nutrition, and mind-body methods for managing your unique women’s health needs.
How integrative women’s health can help you:
Because of her many years of experience in women’s health, our practitioner is able to offer you a range of options for managing your women’s health concerns. In particular, integrative women’s health can help with:
- Staying healthy and promoting wellness
- Concerns about PMS, painful periods or heavy menstrual bleeding
- Sexual concerns
- Recurrent vaginitis, yeast or urinary tract infections
- Menopausal symptoms and more
What the research is showing:
Research reveals integrative treatments effectively address many women’s health concerns.
Many women suffer from symptoms related to their monthly menstrual period-ranging from discomfort to severe symptoms that interfere with the ability to participate in daily activities. Integrative medicine offers treatments including acupuncture, herbs, nutrition and exercise and lifestyle changes, in addition to conventional medicine. In a small study, Traditional Chinese Medicine therapy was shown effective in treating dysmennorhea, severe menstrual pain. Many women’s health treatments have been studied by researchers here at UCSF, including researchers at the Osher Center who are currently studying the effects of an innovative acupuncture based injection of vitamin K for dysmennorhea.
Sexual issues like lack of interest (libido), inability to achieve orgasm or pain with sexual relations can be complicated; yet they are also common. Sexual concerns can result from medical conditions, hormonal treatments, history of sexual abuse, concerns about current/past relationship, menopausal changes or life stressors. Lifestyle changes, relaxation and stress reduction are important for restoring energy in order to nurture a relationship with a partner. It is very important to take all of the different aspects of health‑physiological, social and interpersonal‑into consideration. Many herbs have traditionally been used to treat low libido. Some medications have sexual side effects, and this should be taken into account as well.
For patients with recurrent UTIs, cranberry is recommended for prevention, but not treatment, of UTI. Studies show that cranberry significantly reduces UTI symptoms because it is effective against UTI’s main cause, E. coli. Cranberry can be taken by juice or tablet form, but the tablet forms do not contain sugar, and are often better tolerated and less expensive than unsweetened cranberry juice.
Menopause is an important life transition for women. After twelve consecutive months without menstruation, menopause is complete. Integrative therapies such as botanicals, dietary supplements and non-hormonal pharmaceuticals have been found to aid women during the transition and to help menopausal symptoms, including: hot flashes, sleep difficulties and vaginal dryness. A women’s health visit can answer questions such as:
- Are bioidentical hormones right for you?
- What are compounded hormones?
- Which supplements should you take?
- What kind of physical activity helps strengthen bones in postmenopausal women?
- What are important aspects of nutrition for women during the reproductive years?
- What health promotion strategies can women engage in for the prevention of breast cancer?
Our integrative women’s health services:
Women’s health needs are different across the lifespan. It’s important to take this into account when caring for women of different ages. To help you stay healthy and promote wellness we will ask you to fill out a comprehensive history that assesses your nutritional status, physical activity, use of supplements and medications and spiritual life. We put all of this information together with your medical history to make personalized recommendations that fit your individual lifestyle and help you stay healthy.
Our Integrative Women’s Health Practitioners are:
We accept insurance for this service.
Please visit our Appointments page to schedule a visit.
- The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
- Women’s Health and Complementary Approaches from NCCIH
- WomensHealth.gov: general women’s health information
- Essential vitamins for women’s health: WebMD
- Breast cancer prevention: Cancer.gov
- Osteoporosis prevention
- Integrative Imagery