What Is A Urogynecologist

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And When Should I  Seek Help From One?

You may have heard of urologists, doctors who treat disorders of the urinary tract or gynecologists, doctors who focus on the female reproductive system.

But what is urogynecology? A urogynecologist is a doctor who completes an obstetrics and gynecology residency and a fellowship in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery.

The fellowship consists of three years of additional training focusing on advanced treatment options, including both surgical and non-surgical therapies used to treat problems with the pelvic floor.

The medical term “pelvic floor” refers to the organs and systems in a woman’s pelvis. These structures include the bladder, uterus, vagina, and rectum as well as the surrounding muscles, tissues and nerves.  Many of these organs are connected and are located in a very close area; problems with one organ or system often create problems with the others.

Approximately one-third of women experience pelvic floor problems and can benefit from a urogynecologist’s care.

The comprehensive training described prepares a urogynecologist to become an expert in treating a broad range of problems, such as pelvic organ prolapse, which occurs when the bladder, bowels or uterus drop through the vagina. Symptoms include urinary incontinence or leakage when you cough, exercise, have sex or move around.

Together we can help improve your quality of life.

Anatomical (body) changes which may occur after having a baby is one of the most common reasons women become incontinent or have other problems with organs in the pelvic area. Our training in obstetrics gives us tremendous insights and understanding about how a woman’s body changes after childbirth. Combining this understanding with our comprehensive fellowship training gives us the unique ability to treat problems that may affect the systems and organs within the pelvic floor — even years after giving birth.

Another common problem is the need to go to the bathroom often, when infection is ruled out the likely cause is known as overactive bladder. Urogynecologists also treat patients with fecal incontinence – an inability to control bowel movements.

Although most of these complications are not life threatening, they often have a negative impact on a woman’s quality of life. Many patients tell us they hesitate to spend long periods of time away from home. Some have given up exercise and other activities they once enjoyed.

In the overwhelming majority of cases, a urogynecologist can help. It doesn’t matter how old you are or how long you have been putting up with these problems.

Women can benefit from a variety of non-surgical treatment options, such as medications, physical therapy and/or changes in diet, daily habits or medications.

Some women will find relief through surgery. Surgical options can include same-day, minimally-invasive procedures that women recover from quickly with little or no down time.

Dedicated in providing the expert care you deserve.

At the Christiana Center for Urogynecology and Pelvic Surgery, you will meet three highly skilled and caring physicians: Howard Goldstein, D.O.; Emily K. Saks, M.D.; and Babak Vakili, M.D. We are the only urogynecologists in Delaware who have completed fellowships in the specialty and are board-certified in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. In addition, we are actively researching new ways to manage pelvic floor disorders, as well as novel techniques for treatment.

We are dedicated to bringing the latest treatments and technologies to our patients. We also provide advanced surgical techniques. Our goal is to get you back to feeling yourself and empower you to live your life to the fullest.

Christiana Hospital Medical Arts Pavilion 2     302-623-4055

4735 Ogletown-Stanton Road, Suite 1208, Newark, DE 19713

Christiana Care Center of Women’s Health     302-623-4055

3706 Kennett Pike, Greenville, DE 19807

Christiana Care Concord Health Center     610-361-1030

161 Wilmington-West Chester Pike, Chadds Ford, PA 19317



call 302-623-4055 or visit www.christianacare.org/urogynecology


Babak Vakili, M.D., is the director of the Center for Urogynecology and Pelvic Surgery. Dr. Vakili is a fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He completed a fellowship in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery at the Louisiana State University Health Science Center in New Orleans, LA.


Dr. Saks


Emily K. Saks, M.D., MSCE, is a urogynecologist with the Christiana Care Center for Urogynecology and Pelvic Surgery. Dr. Saks completed a residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia and has completed a fellowship in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.


Howard B. Goldstein, D.O., MPH, is a fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He completed a fellowship in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, NJ. He currently serves as the Director of Research and Education for the Division of Urogynecology. 



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