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Some gynecologic or urogynecologic conditions may be treated surgically. If you are considering surgical options, Alpenglow Women’s Health has surgeons with exceptional experience in traditional and minimally invasive surgical options.

 

Our surgeons will spend time with you discussing your condition, in addition to both the non-surgical and surgical treatment options in detail.

 

SURGERY EDUCATION

Minimally Invasive Surgery
Pain Management
Postoperative Instructions and Care
Preoperative Clearance
Preoperative Instructions
Surgical Locations
Traditional Surgery

MINIMALLY INVASIVE SURGERY

Both Dr. Cook and Dr. Schubert are proficient in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. This can involve a vaginal or laparoscopic approach to most conditions.

Laparoscopy involves small incisions and is associated with shorter hospital stays, less pain and faster recovery. Depending on your health and the complexity of your surgery, many patients are eligible for outpatient management following basic procedures like sterilization to major surgeries like hysterectomy.

DOWNLOAD THE EDUCATION PDFs BELOW

Minimally Invasive Surgery

Both Dr. Cook and Dr. Schubert are proficient in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. This can involve a vaginal or laparoscopic approach to most conditions.


Laparoscopy involves small incisions and is associated with shorter hospital stays, less pain and faster recovery. Depending on your health and the complexity of your surgery, many patients are eligible for outpatient management following basic procedures like sterilization to major surgeries like hysterectomy.

DOWNLOAD THE EDUCATION PDFs BELOW

• Pelvic Organ Prolapse

Pain Management

There is some degree of pain associated with any surgical procedure, though each individual experiences this pain differently.


Medical advances have allowed for multiple medication and intraoperative strategies to help decrease postoperative pain and discomfort. It is now possible to undergo most procedures without the need for narcotic pain medications, which have the potential to lead to addiction as well as increase nausea and constipation.


For our patients with complex pain histories who work with pain management providers, we will develop a collaborative plan with your team to implement a pain management strategy that ensures your postoperative course is as comfortable as possible.

Postoperative Instructions and Care

Your postoperative restrictions will be individualized to your specific procedure and outlined for you in your discharge instructions. Depending on your job description, we will develop a general plan for your anticipated return to work and will be happy to fill out any forms required by your employer.


The following is a list of general restrictions that apply to most OB/GYN procedures.

  • No heavy lifting. 

This can include 15-25lbs for a few days to weeks following your surgery. The purpose of this is to avoid breaking open your stitches and/or causing heavy bleeding.

  • No tub baths/pools/hot tubs/lakes.

If you have a large abdominal incision, we may not want you to soak it in water for a few days before it has begun to heal. Showers are usually okay. Please avoid use of heavily perfumed or dyed soaps as these can irritate your skin incisions. In particular, you may be exposed to certain types of bacteria from pools/hot tubs/lakes that could increase your risk of a surgical site infection.

  • No driving.

For safety reasons, we restrict driving for 24 hours following anesthesia and also while under the influence of narcotic pain medications, which are often required for postoperative pain control. In addition, larger incisions can cause soreness of your abdominal muscles which may make it difficult to react quickly and use your breaks effectively in emergency situations.

 

  • Pelvic rest.

Following some procedures, we will advise “nothing in the vagina” for a few days to allow adequate time for healing as well as prevention of further bleeding and infection. This includes refraining from sexual intercourse and use of tampons until cleared to do so.

Preoperative Clearance

For patients with an extensive or complex medical history, we may ask that you obtain surgical clearance from either your primary care provider (PCP) or cardiologist. This clearance may involve blood work, chest x-ray and heart function tests to adequately assess your risk in undergoing surgery and anesthesia.


Certain medications, namely blood thinners and anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen, may also need to be stopped 2-7 days prior to your surgery depending on the extent of your operation. This collaboration allows us to optimize your care with your safety as our primary goal.

Preoperative Instructions

Someone from the hospital or surgery center will contact you prior to your procedure to ensure everything is in order. Please reference the list of “Do’s & Dont's” below:


​Do:

  • Wear clean, loose fitting clothing including cotton socks/undergarments.

  • Shower/bathe the day before and morning of your surgery with antibacterial soap.

  • Brush your teeth the morning of surgery.

  • Bring a case for your glasses/contacts.

  • Arrange for someone to be with you after your surgery and drive you home. (This cannot include public transit).

  • Bring a copy of your living will or advanced directive if you have one.

  • Notify us of any illness or flu-like symptoms that arise prior to your surgery.


Don’t:

  • Eat or drink anything after midnight before your surgery, unless specifically instructed to take certain medications with a small sip of water.

  • Smoke or use any tobacco products after midnight before your surgery.

  • Wear any jewelry, makeup or nailpolish to surgery.

  • Shave prior to surgery.

DOWNLOAD THE EDUCATION PDFs BELOW

Traditional Surgery

On occasion, traditional surgery via laparotomy (larger abdominal incision) may be warranted in some patients. This may be the case for women with very large cysts or fibroids or dense scar tissue from prior abdominal surgeries or infections. Both of our surgeons are also able to perform surgery in this manner when indicated.

Surgical Locations

We perform surgery at both MatSu Regional Medical Center and the Susitna Surgery Center.