Obstetrics and gynecology are two similar yet uniquely distinct medical fields focused on female reproductive health. New physicians are trained in both fields, however they may choose to focus only on one, or both. Because the female reproductive system is complex and requires a unique skill set, many women prefer seeing an obstetrician, gynecologist or OB/GYN at a well-woman clinic—rather than a family practice doctor.
What is the difference between obstetrics and gynecology?
While OB/GYN is considered one medical specialty, it is a combination of two fields:
An obstetrician (OB) is a physician who specializes in pregnancy, labor, delivery and a woman’s reproductive system. During your pregnancy, an OB will monitor your health and the developing health of your baby. She will also check for health conditions that could lead to problems during your pregnancy or affect your babies’ health like high blood pressure, diabetes, infections or genetic disorders. Part of her duties also includes advising you about maintaining a healthy diet and exercise program that’s right for you as well as helping you cope with morning sickness, back and leg pain, heartburn or other common pregnancy ailments.
Gynecologists are physicians that specialize in women’s health, with a focus on the female reproductive system. They diagnose and treat a wide range of issues like menstruation and fertility issues, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), hormone disorders and menopause. However, they are also skilled in identifying and treating more serious health conditions such as pelvic inflammatory disease, genital warts, cervical cancer, heart disease and polycystic ovarian syndrome.
Whether you’re trying to conceive or are already pregnant, it’s important you get the best possible obstetric care. At Bay Area Physicians for Women, we are skilled in the field of obstetrics and gynecology in Mobile, Alabama and we want to ensure you get the warmth and care you need and deserve. Call 251-344-5900 to schedule an appointment.