Dr. Dorene Dempster is an OB-GYN at the Women’s Center at Door County Medical Center (DCMC). In honor of Women’s Health Week (May 12-18, 2019) we sat down with Dr. Dempster and got her insights on why women should prioritize their health and how DCMC is here to help, at any stage in a woman’s life.
Why is Women’s Health Week necessary?
Dr. Dempster: Women’s Health Week exists to highlight that women have health needs and concerns separate -although at times similar- to men (heart disease is a good example). It also exists to help remind women to simply take care of their health. As caregivers, women often forget to take care of themselves; we are busy taking care of our children, our spouses, and/or our aging parents.
How does a woman’s health care needs change over the course of her life?
Dr. Dempster: A woman’s health needs change as she goes through the circle of life, from childhood to puberty, to the childbearing years, middle age, menopause and the older years. Each stage has concerns and topics related to the stage; contraception and preconception counseling, and menopausal concerns as examples. Our providers are skilled at understanding these changes which are unique to female anatomy.
What are some misconceptions women might have about their health?
Dr. Dempster: Women are good at denial while we take care of others. For example, I have many patients who falsely believe that since there is no history of breast cancer in their family, that they are low to “no” risk for breast cancer. Statistically, they have about 1/8 chance of developing breast cancer in their lifetime; that risk may be higher if there is a 1st degree relative with breast cancer.
What services does DCMC provide to support Women’s Health?
Dr. Dempster: We have 3D Mammography, Bone Density Scanning (DEXA), ultrasound services and massage therapy. Our team of 3 Board Certified OB-GYN consists of Dr. Charles Shutt, myself, and Dr. Leslie Alzuhn-Hansen. (Dr. Hansen will be leaving the practice to pursue another practice opportunity closer to Madison the beginning of June.) We are currently recruiting to fill this full-time position!
Our providers collaborate together on challenging gynecologic and obstetrical patients. We share call, in that whoever is on call is typically taking care of labor patients or afterhours concerns. Our Women’s Center is located at the Sturgeon Bay campus and was designed with a woman’s complete comfort in mind.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call the Women’s Health Center at (920) 746-3666.