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Total care for women

If you’re a female anywhere from the teens to the senior years, an obstetrician/gynecologist can be your trusted partner in maintaining a healthy, vital life. Obstetrics focuses on the care of women during pregnancy, childbirth and the six weeks afterward that are known as the postpartum period. Gynecology encompasses the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of problems of the female reproductive system. Most OB/GYNs practice in both areas.

At Advanced OB/GYN Associates, Westchester Medical Center has gathered a stellar group of general OB/GYNs and subspecialists in the fields of maternal-fetal medicine, reproductive endocrinology and infertility, gynecologic ultrasound, urogynecology, gynecologic oncology, and pediatric and adolescent gynecology. As a Level IV Regional Perinatal Center and the hub of a network of affiliated hospitals and clinics encompassing seven counties in New York, the medical center offers specialized services on site in Valhalla and Hawthorne as well as at 13 teaching and community hospitals. Working together, these partners ensure that women in the Hudson Valley and their newborn babies have access to services as advanced as those available anywhere else in the United States.

All of the full-time staff members of Advanced OB/GYN Associates are also faculty members at New York Medical College, participating in independent and collaborative research designed to improve healthcare for women at all stages of their lives.

The OB/GYNs at Westchester Medical Center continue a proud tradition of innovation that over the past 50 years has brought sound-wave ultrasound technology from the military into hospitals and imaging centers, where it is used to provide fetal images that are breathtaking in their clarity, and to enable gynecologists to plan complex cancer surgery or perform intricate procedures.

“At Westchester Medical Center, our OB/GYNs use two-, three-, and even four-dimensional ultrasound images to determine fetal age, screen for genetic abnormalities, view the fetus’ anatomy, examine the condition of the placenta and guide amniocentesis and other prenatal studies,” says Howard Blanchette, M.D., Director of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Westchester Medical Center and head of its Advanced OB/GYN Associates practice.

Coming soon, says Dr. Blanchette, also a professor of OB/GYN at New York Medical College, is a test of the mother’s blood that will determine from fetal cells swirling within her own cells whether the fetus has chromosomal abnormalities. “This test will just about put an end to the need for amniocentesis to diagnose a chromosomal abnormality and enable a woman to discontinue a pregnancy if she chooses before the first trimester,” he says.

If 25 years ago gynecologists hadn’t pioneered the use of slender abdominal scopes called laparoscopes to diagnose and treat gynecologic problems, today’s surgeons and urologists might not be using specialized fiber-optic scopes to perform many minimally invasive procedures through pinpoint incisions. “OB/GYNs pushed the envelope, using laparoscopes to remove cancerous organs, perform infertility treatments, repair vaginal prolapse and treat incontinence,” says Dr. Blanchette.

Westchester Medical Center’s da Vinci® robotic surgical system takes laparoscopic procedures to a higher level of precision, providing gynecologists and other surgeons with exceptional visualization of the surgical field, expert suturing and the ability to translate their own hand movements into the smoother movements of the robot’s three arms.

“The da Vinci has been a breakthrough in gynecologic cancer surgery,” says Dr. Blanchette. “To be able to tell a patient that she can go home after only one or two nights in the hospital and be back to her regular activities within one week is an amazing improvement over the way things were a few years ago. The next wave for us will be the ability to personalize a woman’s treatment with novel chemotherapeutic agents that target cancer cells and improve cure rates for ovarian and other gynecologic cancers.”

For more information about Advanced OB/GYN Associates or to make an appointment, call 914-493-2250 or visit www.worldclassmedicine.com/OBGYN

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