From before puberty to after menopause, a woman’s body is constantly changing and developing. And, at each stage of development and maturation, she may have questions about gynecological, reproductive, and sexual health. Thus, it is important that a woman establishes a partnership with her health care provider — often an OB/GYN (obstetrician/gynecologist), certified nurse midwife, or nurse practitioner — early on.
Health care providers who specialize in general women’s medical care, diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the female reproductive system, and care of pregnant women, include obstetricians/gynecologists, who are physicians, and certified nurse midwives and women’s health nurse practitioners, who are nurses with advanced education.
Many of the conditions that affect gynecological, reproductive, and sexual health may be detected early, which, in most cases, provides for a more positive prognosis and successful treatment.
The nervous system is a complex, sophisticated system that regulates and coordinates the body’s basic functions and activities. It is made up of two major divisions, including the central nervous system (consisting of the brain and spinal cord) and the peripheral nervous system (consisting of all other neural elements). The central nervous system controls vision, thought, speech, behavior, and movement. The peripheral nervous system relays information to the central nervous system about sensation from the body and the special senses such as vision, taste, and hearing and relays information back to the body for transmitting messages to muscles and glands.
In addition to the brain and spinal cord, principal organs of the nervous system include:
The nervous system is vulnerable to various disorders. Because of its complexity and the high technology used in evaluation and treatment of its disorders, the branches of medicine, physician specialists, and clinical services that manage it are as numerous and varied as the disorders and conditions.
Orthopedics is the branch of medicine concerned with diseases, injuries, and conditions of the musculoskeletal system, or the body’s muscles and skeleton, including the joints, ligaments, tendons, and nerves.
Orthopedic surgery is made up of doctors and other health care professionals who provide comprehensive orthopedic services. Their expertise provides treatment and care of diseases, injuries, fractures, and pain.
Orthopedists also design rehabilitation programs for the injured or physically disabled and participate in ongoing musculoskeletal research.
The cardiovascular system is made up of the heart and blood vessels. Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) include coronary heart disease (coronary artery disease, ischemic heart disease), stroke (brain attack), high blood pressure (hypertension), and rheumatic heart disease.
Millions of U.S. adults have one or more forms of CVD.
Each year in the U.S., cardiovascular diseases top the list of most serious health problems. Coronary heart disease and stroke are leading causes of death, and stroke is also a leading cause of serious, long-term disability.
Yet, studies show that nearly everyone can become heart healthy by following a healthy diet and participating in an appropriate exercise program; eliminating tobacco products; and following a routine health care plan.