Ask the Nurse

Answers for your specific questions.

Wondering about your health? Confused by what you’ve read? Browse our Ask the Nurse answer archive to find answers to many women's health questions and concerns. All answers are from a Cleveland Clinic women's health nurse.

Ask the Nurse Archive

Lowering LDL Cholesterol

July 17, 2013 at 10:20am

I recently read a newsletter that featured a section on lowering one’s LDL and it recommended the use of statins. However, and given this is a newsletter specifically focused on women’s health, it has been my understanding that there has been no good research results to date linking the use of statins to lower LDL in women and the prevention of heart disease.

I have had high LDL since my early 30s, and despite the fact that I eat almost no saturated fat and I exercise frequently and rigorously, it has not gone down. I did go on a statin for a while, but felt some muscle weakness, which I did not want to tolerate, as I felt it was interfering with my workouts. Because of my concern and because I could find no good evidence for the use of statins in women, I discontinued its use.

I would love to hear your opinion and that of other medical professionals from the Center for Women’s Health on this issue. Thank you.

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Tips to Lose Belly Fat

June 11, 2013 at 10:53am

I had a partial hysterectomy and now most of my weight is in my midsection. Is it possible to lose belly fat and make my stomach flat again? What exercises can I do to get rid of the extra weight?

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Overactive Bladder

May 22, 2013 at 9:54am

I have an overactive bladder and I do not want to take medications. I just joined a gym and I have been drinking the recommended measure of water each day. Is there any tip to help me NOT have to urinate so frequently?

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Health screenings and guidelines for women in their 60s

May 14, 2013 at 2:08pm

What should a preventative maintenance program for a woman over age 65 look like? I scheduled a pap smear and pelvic exam with my family doctor, and she did not think this was necessary at my age. However, she did not discuss why or discuss what checkups I should be scheduling at my age.

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Back Pain

May 7, 2013 at 10:57am

After working in my garden for a few hours, I am experiencing pain in my lower back. I do not take any prescribed drugs, but should I ask my doctor for a muscle relaxer?

I do lie down and put my feet flat on the floor, which helps ease the pain. After several days of rest, I start to feel better, but I do need to work in my garden again.

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Perimenopause Symptoms

April 22, 2013 at 10:15am

Can hormone changes during perimenopause cause vulvar burning, itching or redness?

Tests ruled out any infection, and multiple treatments with topical steroids only make the symptoms worse. Oral steroids have not helped either. I have gone soap-free for that area and for undergarments as well. It is very uncomfortable for even simple activities like walking and sitting.

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April 18, 2013 at 9:56am

Is there any possible way to get rid of cellulite on legs, mostly inner thighs and the front of my thighs? I am at a healthy weight for my height and run almost every day. What are my options?

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Weight Loss Beverages

April 9, 2013 at 3:08pm

Is there a beverage I can make at home that is beneficial to weight loss? I know water is best, but I hear about beverages that can boost weight loss. Is this true? I am healthy otherwise, but overweight.

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April 4, 2013 at 1:54pm

Recently, I’ve been having a problem with my body overheating. I’m 71 years old and post-menopausal. It’s a very uncomfortable situation, and I would like to know if there is a natural way to balance my hormones without going on HRT.

I didn’t experience any problems going through menopause, it was a breeze for me. I keep a close eye on my blood pressure and it is steadily normal. Normal for me is on the low side, which is lucky for me.

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March 29, 2013 at 1:11pm

I do not have daily bowel movements, and I’m considered to be irregular. What I don’t understand is what that means for me. Does that mean that my body is not doing something properly and that I should be doing something to go at least once a day or am I fine?

I am a black female, 32 years of age and just really started working out about a month ago.

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