Pelvic inflammatory disease or PID is a serious infection of the fallopian tubes and uterus. This infection, which may result in blockage or scarring of the tubes, is the most common preventable cause of infertility in women. It is estimated that over one million women in the U.S.
A condom (rubber, prophylactic) is a sheath worn over the penis. Condoms originally were designed to block the escape of sperm, but now have been shown to be effective in blocking entry and exit of bacteria and some viruses. Most condoms are made of latex but some, called "skin condoms," are made of sheep intestine. Only the latex condom should be used for disease protection because the AIDS virus, and possibly other disease agents, are able to penetrate the larger pores in the skin condom.
Vaginal spermicides are products such as foam, jelly, cream, suppositories or film that are inserted deep into the vagina on or near the cervix shortly before sexual intercourse. Most of these products contain nonoxynol-9, a chemical that kills sperm on contact. To be effective, a spermicide must be used every time intercourse occurs.
We recommend that vaginal spermicides always be used with condoms.
Genital herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus (abbreviated as HSV). It is very common--about 1 in 4 women and 1 in 8 men have genital herpes. There are two types of the virus:
A urinary tract (UTI) or bladder infection occurs when bacteria gain access to and multiply in the bladder. Bacteria infect the bladder by way of the urethra, a small, short tube that opens near the vagina. The placement and size of the urethra make bladder infections very common in women. Men rarely develop bladder infections because their urethras are longer.
Birth control pills (also known as combined oral contraception or "the pill") are used to prevent pregnancy. They are an effective non-surgical and reversible method of contraception. If taken consistently and correctly, birth control pills are more than 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.
Complementary and alternative medicines (CAM) are health care therapies that are not used by practitioners of conventional (Western) medicine. These remedies are sometimes excluded from standard practice due to lack of evidence.
There are several broad categories that CAM fall into. Some can be in more than one of these categories.
Healing systems are both practice and theories to heal the body. These focus on a way of life. Some are based on traditional practices of individual cultures.
The core belief of this philosophy is that when your mind and body are in harmony, you will have better health. Some of these are accepted as standard treatments. Examples of mind and body treatments include:
This includes natural and biological products to promote health. These typically include herbal treatments, special diets, and individual biological treatment.
Important points to consider about biological CAM treatments:
Practitioners promote healing through manipulation and movement of the body.
Practitioners of energy healing believe there are energies that flow in the body or external energy fields. Illness may occur when the body's energy is blocked or out of balance. Each variety of energy therapy has a unique set of beliefs about how to correct this energy.
Before beginning any new therapy, it is important to be well-informed. This is especially important with complementary and alternative medicines. Little is known about many of these treatments, and some can cause adverse side effects.
Most insurance companies cover some of these services, such as acupuncture or visits with a certified naturopath (ND). To find out for sure, you will need to contact your insurance company. Depending on the treatment there may be a minimum number of sessions required to fully benefit from the therapy.
Like any health care practitioner, complementary and alternative medical practitioners should have certification and licenses. Make sure the practitioner you are considering has the proper training. Selecting a CAM provider.
Office of Dietary Supplements (National Institute of Health)
CAM on Pubmed research database (National institute of Health)
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicines (National Institute of Health)
Complementary and Alternative Medicine (Medline Plus National institute for Health)
Complementary and Alternative Medicine Video List (National Institute of Health, Senior Health)
HerbMed (Alternation Medicine Foundation)
Complementary and Alternative Medicine updates (Journal of the American Medical Association)
Authored by: Hall Health Center Health Promotion staff
Reviewed by: Hall Health Center Primary Care Clinic staff (MC), February 2014
Drinking can be a relaxing and social activity, but if you consume too much, you could be risking your life. Drinking too much too fast can affect your breathing, heat rate, gag reflex, and can cause coma and death.
Alcohol poisoning should be taken seriously.
Despite its colorful name, chlamydia is not a flower! It is the most common sexually transmitted bacterial infection on university campuses. Approximately 2.8 million new cases are reported in the United States each year.