Are you having back pain with any of the following?
We understand that you are experiencing one or more of the health issues that might be impacting your back pain.
We recommend that you discuss these health issues with your doctor before proceeding with this program.
Once you are cleared by your doctor to do this program, we hope it helps you find relief from your back pain.
A woman's health needs continue to evolve from her teen years through her golden years. Being active, eating well, and getting your recommended health screenings are the foundation for good health at any age.
Birth control (also known as contraception) prevents pregnancy. Choosing the best method of birth control is an important decision. There are many types of birth control, and your choice may depend on:
If you have a chronic medical disease, take certain types of medication, or have a disability, please see our section on women with medical conditions.
Risk of pregnancy is important to consider when choosing a birth control method. Different birth control methods have different levels of risk of pregnancy. For example, birth control pills have an 8 percent risk of pregnancy with normal use. This means that if 100 women used birth control pills for 1 year, 8 of them will become pregnant. The risk may be lower with perfect use. Comparatively, the birth control implant has a less than 1 percent risk of pregnancy.
Did you know that half of all pregnancies are surprises? A surprise pregnancy can change your life. If you don't want to get pregnant, take some time to review your birth control options. We can help you choose the best option for you and your lifestyle. You may need to try more than one method before finding a method that works best for you. Many women also change their birth control method depending on their life stage.
Since many pregnancies are surprises, we recommend all women of childbearing age (15 to 49 years) take 0.4 mg of folic acid daily. The easiest way to do this is with a standard multivitamin. If you think you might be pregnant, there are things you should be doing to take care of your health. Contact us right away.
It's important to understand that when you become sexually active, you can be at risk of getting a sexually transmitted disease (STD). This is true for all forms of sexual activity, whether it is oral, vaginal, or anal.
STDs are caused by different bacteria or viruses that are passed between partners during sexual activity. Some STDs are easily treated with no long-term effects, while others can be carried for life or cause serious or life-threatening diseases.
Except for not having intimate contact, there is no sure way to avoid contracting an STD. You can reduce your risk by:
Being pressured or forced to have sex is common, but it's not okay. It can happen even in long-term relationships. It's also not okay for someone to refuse to wear a condom to protect against pregnancy or STDs, or to otherwise interfere with your birth control. If this is happening to you, you can get help by talking to us or:
Barrier methods of birth control keep you from getting pregnant by placing a physical barrier between the sperm and the egg. There are several types of barrier birth control: condom, female condom, diaphragm, and spermicide.
Unlike other methods of birth control, barrier methods are used only when you have sex. There are certain advantages to this: You don't have to remember to take a pill every day or change a patch every week. But, on the other hand, thinking about birth control before and during sex can be a disadvantage as well. Some people feel like stopping to put on a condom or insert a diaphragm is an interruption when they’re in the mood.
The condom and the female condom are the only types of barrier birth control that can protect against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including HIV/AIDS. This is very important, as STDs can be passed on to others and cause serious or even life-threatening diseases.
Some barrier methods are very easy to get: condoms, female condoms, and spermicides are available at your local drugstore or in our pharmacies. To begin using a diaphragm, you should make an appointment to see us and be fitted for the correct size. Some people are allergic to latex so they cannot use regular condoms. The substitutes, like polyurethane, don't give as much sensation, and the animal skin condoms don't protect against STDs.
Birth control pills, patches, and rings are methods that use hormones to prevent pregnancy. Hormonal birth control methods are highly effective. They work by stopping your ovaries from producing an egg once a month. The hormones can also thicken the mucus made by your cervix (the narrow lower end of the uterus), making it harder for sperm to reach the egg.
Some hormonal methods require that you use them every day; others only need to be used on a weekly or monthly basis. Hormonal methods include the pill, the patch, and the ring. Some methods can be used continuously. Let us know if you are interested in scheduling your periods or decreasing the number of periods you have.
Most birth control pills contain 2 hormones: estrogen and progesterone. There is one kind of hormonal birth control that uses 1 hormone instead of 2: The progesterone-only "mini-pill" has no estrogen in it.
Depo-Provera, sometimes called "the shot," is an injection that contains the hormone progestin.
Most women can use hormonal birth control safely, but some women should not. We should discuss your options if:
Long-term birth control methods are very effective at preventing pregnancy. They are also convenient and easy to use. There are several types of long-term birth control, including a birth control implant and intrauterine device (IUD).
Long-term birth control is best for people who want to prevent pregnancy for a long period of time. With these birth control methods:
Here are some helpful questions to ask yourself, to decide if long-term birth control is right for you.
If you are sure that you want to prevent pregnancy for a year or longer, long-term contraceptives might be a good choice for you.
Long-term contraceptives might be a good option for women who prefer not to think about birth control every day or every time they have sex.
Some long-term contraceptives change the way you have your period every month or even stop you from having it altogether.
Hormones can be a good choice for many women, but some would rather not use hormones at all. Some long-term birth control methods use hormones and some do not, so the way you feel about hormones can help you choose which method of long-term birth control is best.
There are many things to consider when choosing a method of long-term birth control. We are happy to talk with you about your options.
Surgical, permanent birth control methods might be an option for you if you know for sure that you do not want to have any more (or any) children. This process is sometimes called sterilization.
In all these methods of birth control, pregnancy is permanently prevented by closing off the fallopian tubes, so sperm and eggs can never meet. Until recently, that meant "getting your tubes tied." Now there are new, safe, and effective ways of doing this, including:
In addition, a vasectomy is a method of permanent birth control that may be an option for a male partner. It's important to know that vasectomy is a simple and safe office procedure.
Surgical sterilization for women is safe and effective, but it's a big decision to make. It's a good choice only for women who are sure that they will not ever want to become pregnant. Please talk to a trusted friend or family member, a professional counselor, or to us before making a decision about permanently ending your ability to become pregnant.
If you have sex without using any protection, emergency birth control can prevent you from becoming pregnant. You should consider emergency birth control if:
The sooner you take emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs), the more effective they are in preventing pregnancy. ECPs alone are not a good form of birth control. If you find yourself using them often, now is the time to plan a regular, more effective method of birth control.
Deciding which method of birth control is best for you is always a personal decision. However, if you have special needs that might influence your choice, we can talk and make sure you're choosing the best birth control for you. Preventing a surprise pregnancy is especially important for women with medical conditions because some conditions can complicate a pregnancy and put your health or the health of the baby at risk.
Contact us to discuss your birth control options if you have a long-term medical condition that requires medication, such as:
While there are many good options, some kinds of birth control may not be right for you.
If you aren’t sure which type of birth control is best for you, you and I can discuss your options and make a birth control plan.
If you’d like to start using a new method of birth control, your next steps depend on which type of birth control you’re interested in using.
If you need emergency birth control:
You can connect with me in a variety of ways, depending on the situation and what is most convenient for you at the time. I am available online, by telephone, or in person.
If your concerns are urgent, please contact our Appointment and Advice line, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Our advice nurses can give you immediate advice, and our telephone staff can send me a message or schedule an appointment for you.
If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.
Teens 13 and older can get help from any medical professional without parental permission for these confidential services.
Make an appointment to talk with me privately if you:
You can make your own appointments for confidential services by calling our Appointment and Advice Line, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
What we talk about is private. In most cases, I cannot tell your parents or guardians anything about your visit for any of the confidential services listed.
One important exception: I do need to tell them if you are in danger or if you are thinking about hurting yourself or someone else.
We will protect your privacy. We also encourage you to talk with your parents or another trusted adult, if possible, for advice and support.
In partnership with you as a parent, we want to teach our young adolescent patients to begin to take charge of their personal health care as they transition from childhood to adulthood.
We sometimes request confidential time with teens to ask about sensitive issues. Time alone allows us to address important health and safety issues. It also gives your teen a chance to confidentially ask questions or voice concerns about topics that may be embarrassing. Many teens (and adults) find it difficult to talk about sensitive issues and prefer to see their doctor privately.
As your teen’s doctor, I also want to talk with you about your questions or concerns. At your teen’s appointment, please let the medical assistant or nurse know if you have any specific concerns that you wish to discuss. I will make sure to set aside time during the appointment to talk with you about any concerns or questions you may have.
For nonurgent concerns or questions, you can e-mail me using this site, once you have set up access to manage your teen’s health. Use the Manage Your Family’s Health links to get started.
If your concerns or questions are immediate, or you simply prefer to use the telephone, please call our Appointment and Advice line, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our advice nurses can give you immediate advice, and our telephone staff can send me a message or schedule an appointment for your teen.
Having all of our Kaiser Permanente departments located together or nearby, including pharmacy, laboratory, radiology, and health education, makes getting care easier.
Another major benefit is our comprehensive electronic medical record system, which allows all of the doctors and clinicians involved in your care to stay current on your health status and to collaborate with each other as appropriate.
When every member of the health care team is aware of all aspects of your condition, care is safer and more effective.
We will work together to monitor and assess how your medications are working and make adjustments as needed.
Prescriptions can be filled at any Kaiser Permanente pharmacy. Just let me know which pharmacy works best for you, and I will send the prescription electronically, in advance.
If refills are needed in the future, you can:
Order them online or by phone. Order future refills from my home page or by phone using the pharmacy refill number on your prescription label.
For lab tests, I will use our electronic medical record system to send the requisition to the Kaiser Permanente laboratory of your choice. For imaging procedures, such as X-rays, we will schedule an appointment with the Radiology Department.
When the results are ready, we will contact you with the results by phone. We may ask you for a phone number where you can receive your results confidentially. If you do not have a cell phone, we may ask you to call us for the results instead, to ensure that we protect your privacy.
My specialty colleagues are readily available to assist me if I need additional advice about your condition. In some cases, I may contact them during your visit, so we can discuss your care together. If we decide you need a specialty appointment after that discussion, we can often schedule it the same day or soon thereafter.
My goal is to provide high-quality care and to offer you choices that make your health care convenient. I recommend that you become familiar with the many resources we offer so that you can choose the services that work best for you.
My Doctor Online is available to help you manage your care at any time that is most convenient for you. From my home page you can sign up for kp.org and:
*Secure means e-mail communication between you, me, and other members of your health care team is behind our firewall and password protected. Anyone who can act on your behalf (for example, your parents) will have access to this e-mail box. If you want to talk confidentially, l encourage you to call me or make an appointment to see me in person, instead of sending a secure message online.
If you have an emergency medical condition, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital. An emergency medical condition is any of the following: (1) a medical condition that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity (including severe pain) such that you could reasonably expect the absence of immediate medical attention to result in serious jeopardy to your health or body functions or organs; (2) active labor when there isn't enough time for safe transfer to a Plan hospital (or designated hospital) before delivery, or if transfer poses a threat to your (or your unborn child's) health and safety, or (3) a mental disorder that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity such that either you are an immediate danger to yourself or others, or you are not immediately able to provide for, or use, food, shelter, or clothing, due to the mental disorder.
This information is not intended to diagnose health problems or to take the place of specific medical advice or care you receive from your physician or other health care professional. If you have persistent health problems, or if you have additional questions, please consult with your doctor. If you have questions or need more information about your medication, please speak to your pharmacist. Kaiser Permanente does not endorse the medications or products mentioned. Any trade names listed are for easy identification only.