Brook Thomson, MDObstetrics & Gynecology
Robert Schenken, MDObstetrics & Gynecology
Sarah Vanarendonk, MDObstetrics & Gynecology
From Routine Screenings to Advanced Tests
Whether you need an annual well-woman checkup or you’re experiencing worrisome symptoms, we are here to help. Our physicians provide routine screenings as preventive measures against disease. We also offer advanced testing to ensure a prompt and accurate diagnosis to any gynecological problem you may be having.
Our specialists are equipped to diagnose all types of women’s health conditions—from the most common to the exceptionally rare. We have several full-time radiologists in the gynecology department, so you don’t have to go to a separate radiology center.
You can feel at ease with us. We will do everything we can to relieve any anxiety you may have during exams, tests and procedures.
Our gynecology specialists provide the following preventive and diagnostic tests and procedures:
Typically part of an annual well-woman exam, a pelvic examination allows your doctor to check your reproductive organs for abnormalities. You may have a pelvic exam to evaluate gynecological symptoms such as pain or bleeding.
This X-ray test screens for breast cancer before a lump can be felt. You may get a mammogram as a diagnostic test if you have symptoms of breast cancer. Women at average risk for breast cancer typically begin getting annual or biannual mammograms sometime between ages 40 and 50. Women at high risk for breast cancer may begin getting mammograms before age 40.
Also called a Pap smear, this screening can detect cervical cancer or cell abnormalities that can lead to cervical cancer in the future. Women begin getting Pap tests around age 21.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) test
Usually performed on women older than 30, this test detects the presence of HPV, a virus that can cause cervical cancer. The HPV test is sometimes performed at the same time as a Pap test.
Postpartum depression is more serious and longer lasting than the “baby blues.” We screen new mothers for this condition to ensure their mental well-being.
Sexually transmitted disease (STD) screening
If you are sexually active, your doctor may recommend regular screening for some sexually transmitted infections, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia. Pregnant women should also be tested for syphilis, HIV and hepatitis B early in pregnancy.
We offer free pregnancy tests, which can be performed with a urine or a blood test.
Bone density testing
During bone density tests, X-rays are used to measure the levels of calcium and other minerals in your bones. This test can help diagnose osteoporosis, when bones are weak and fragile.
Hormonal imbalance testing
Women approaching menopause may experience natural changes to their levels of estrogen, testosterone and progesterone. Symptoms related to these imbalances may not be cause to test hormone levels. However, if you are experiencing menstrual changes before menopause, sleep problems or unexplained weight changes, testing may be needed. This is particularly for abnormal thyroid-stimulating hormone levels.
You may need a cervical biopsy if your doctor finds an abnormality during a pelvic exam, if you have an abnormal Pap test, or if you test positive for human papillomavirus (HPV).
Cervical biopsies are typically performed about a week after your period.
If you have an abnormal Pap test, you may need a colposcopy to check your cervix, vagina and vulva for abnormalities. A colposcopy can help diagnose genital warts, cervical inflammation or precancerous genital tissue.
Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery. This procedure can be used to diagnose or treat chronic pelvic pain, endometriosis, fibroid tumors, infertility and ovarian cysts. Laparoscopy can help determine the stage of gynecological cancer, perform a hysterectomy (removing the uterus), remove fibroids and perform tubal ligation, among other procedures.
This procedure can help diagnose and treat problems with the bladder or urethra. A doctor may use a cystoscopy to diagnose bladder cancer or determine the cause of urinary symptoms, like blood in the urine, urinary incontinence, overactive bladder and painful urination.
In addition to monitoring fetal development during pregnancy, we can use a pelvic ultrasound to help diagnose other gynecological health conditions. These conditions include uterine abnormalities, fibroid tumors, inflammation in the pelvis and ectopic pregnancy. Either a transabdominal ultrasound (externally on the abdomen) or transvaginal ultrasound (internally in the vagina) may be used.
An endometrial biopsy is used to remove some tissue from the lining of the uterus to test for cancer or other abnormalities.
This procedure helps diagnose and treat abnormal cervical or uterine bleeding. A hysteroscopy can also be used to remove abnormal tissue.
This is a type of ultrasound that introduces a sterile saline solution into the uterus, which helps produce a clearer image during the ultrasound. A sonohysterography may be used to diagnose fibroids, polyps, scarring, abnormal shape or cancer in the uterus.
In this procedure, a contrast dye is used to get clear X-ray images of the uterus and fallopian tubes. A hysterosalpingography may be used to diagnose a fallopian tube blockage or as part of an infertility exam.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
A pelvic MRI is an imaging test that uses magnets and radio waves to produce pictures of the pelvic region. It doesn’t use radiation. A pelvic MRI can help diagnose gynecological cancer, abnormal bleeding or growths, uterine fibroids, or problems with the uterus, cervix or fallopian tubes.
During amniocentesis, a doctor will remove some amniotic fluid from around a fetus. It can be used to diagnose a health problem with the fetus or to drain excess amniotic fluid.
This is a type of cervical biopsy in which your doctor may remove some tissue from the lining of the endocervical canal for testing, potentially for cancer. It can also be used to remove polyps.
Exceptional Breast Care and Maternity Care
Our Breast Health and Pregnancy and Childbirth services offer the highest-quality breast care and maternity care for women in San Antonio and South Texas. Our specialists collaborate with your primary doctor to ensure everyone is on the same page regarding your health, including any diagnosis or treatment you may receive.
With our electronic health record system, all of your medical information is available to your entire medical team so each provider can better coordinate your treatment.