Dr. Lauren Streicher: Educating Patients on their Options

By Michelle Alford on March 5, 2014 in Heroes
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h25 Lauren Streicher, MD is an Associate Clinical Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Northwestern University’s medical school, The Feinberg School of Medicine, and is the founder of Gynecologic Specialists of Northwestern, SC. She is a Fellow in the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, a Diplomat of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, a member of the Association for Gynecologic Laparoscopy, the American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopic Surgeons and a Certified Menopause Practitioner of The North American Menopause Society.

In addition to her academic and clinical responsibilities, Dr. Streicher devotes her time to providing evidence-based, up-to-date information to women through consumer publications and media appearances. She is currently appearing weekly on ABC’s Windy City Live! and is a recurrent guest on shows such as The Dr. Oz ShowThe Steve Harvey ShowThe Oprah Winfrey ShowThe Today Show and Good Morning America-Health. Dr. Streicher has had over 1000 appearances on local and national news regarding all aspects of women’s health care including The McNeil Lehrer HourABC News Now,20/20World News TonightABCCBSNBCFOXWGNthe Baby Channel, and Lifetime TV. She hosted The Answered Patient Series and Advances in Women’s Health, onReach MD XM 24, the station for medical professionals.

Dr. Streicher contributes articles and has been interviewed for many magazines, books and newspapers. During the last year she has been interviewed for articles for Glamour,CosmoOprah!,Marie ClairePreventionWomen’s HealthSelfWhole LivingAll You,First for WomenWomen’s DayFamily Circle, and Shape. She is the health expert forThe Ladies Home Journal, a medical correspondent for ABC News and an editor for Web MD. Her column, “Ask the Ob-Gyn” appeared weekly in the Chicago Sun Times from 2004-2008. She is currently blogging as an “Expert Contributor” on the Dr. Oz Show web site and EverdayHealth.com.

Castle Connolly and Chicago Magazine have consistently recognized her as one of the “Top Doctors” in Chicago and she was featured in an article in Chicago Magazine’s Top Doc issue. She was recently designated as one of the 100 Women of Influence byToday’s Chicago Women magazine. Her book, The Essential Guide to Hysterectomy, was published in 2004 and the second edition released in 2013. Her next book, a comprehensive guide to sexual health, Love Sex Again: A Gynecologist Finally Fixes the Medical Problems That Are Sabotaging Your Sex Life will be released next month.

Dr. Streicher’s political involvement in reproductive rights and health issues influenced her choice to become a gynecologist. “It just seemed like the right choice for me,” she told us. “I also liked surgery and liked the idea of doing surgery on someone I know. Most surgeons operate on people they don’t know, but when women have gynecological surgery, they usually go to someone they’ve seen for a long time.”

Symptoms of uterine fibroids are often overlooked by patients. “Many women don’t realize that heavy bleeding, protruded belly, and pressure on the bladder are often symptoms of fibroids,” Dr. Streicher explained. “It’s not normal to have heavy bleeding. If a woman has one heavy period, that’s not a reason to be concerned, but if they’re consistently heavy and getting heavier, then she should see a gynecologist.”

Fibroid treatments vary significantly from patient to patient. “Back in the forties, it used to be that everyone had a hysterectomy, and that isn’t always the best choice or the right choice,” Dr. Streicher said. “A thirty-year-old woman who hasn’t had children has different options than someone who is older and doesn’t intend to have any more children. This is why I wrote my book, The Essential Guide to Hysterectomy, because it’s not a simple solution. A true consultation with a woman with fibroids would take an hour to an hour and a half to really evaluate her situation, and no doctor can spend that much time with every patient. This way, women can read the book and have a better idea of the possible treatments before they go talk to their doctors and the conversation can be much more focused. There are many options and patients should get to make that decision.”

Read the full interview at Fibroids1