As one of the only gynaecological practices in Australia run purely by women, for women, Northside Gynaecology is dedicated to compassionately meeting the unique and changing gynaecological needs of modern women.
Owned by renowned gynaecologist Dr Archna Saraswat, the practice was born out of a clear need for focussed attention on gynaecological services for women.
Question: Can you tell us about Northside Gynaecology?
Dr Archna Saraswat: We are a group of female gynaecologists all sharing in over 50 years of gynaecological experience. We are highly experienced in providing a holistic approach to women's pelvic health, offering a number of innovative surgical techniques and non-surgical therapies. We offer three locations on Brisbane's northside for our patient's to visit us and we also cover operating at three of Brisbane's hospitals. We have a great team of women, it's like a sisterhood for us coming to work each day.
Question: What originally inspired your passion for Gynaecology?
Dr Archna Saraswat: I've always been fascinated by the complexities of each woman and how they are all so individual. I love this multifaceted field, and am especially interested in the surgical aspect of gynaecology.
Question: Why was it important for you to provide a gynaecological practice run by women, for women?
Dr Archna Saraswat: We did a lot of research on gynaecology and then obstetrics and found that most women prefer to come to women for their "female problems". Women tend to find that another women would understand better when they tell their story of dealing with heavy periods or the feeling you get with cramps and the pain associated with it. Men can appreciate the feeling but they never experienced that themselves.
Question: What's a typical day like for you at Northside Gynaecology?
Dr Archna Saraswat: It's definitely very active, quite busy. I get up early to do my exercise before the day starts. Around 7am I visit patients at the hospital and then I'm at the practice by 8am. I spend the day seeing patients ranging from 13 to 90 years old, each one of them has different concern, which requires a specific approach and procedure. I finish work at around 6pm, often just in time to run to the theatre.
Question: What are the most common gynaecological symptoms women visit you regarding?
Dr Archna Saraswat: Generally, women come to see us with cysts on their ovaries, general pelvic pain and endometriosis. The most common gynaecological symptoms that I personally treat are abnormal bleeding, abnormal contraction stress test and prolapse and incontinence.
Question: What usually happens during a women's first gynaecological appointment?
Dr Archna Saraswat: A detailed consultation with their full medical history and an examination. This is where sometimes we might need to book more than one appointment to come to the conclusion or the treatment options available. Sometimes further diagnostic testing is required or a procedure in rooms, which requires follow up.
Question: How can a women prepare for her first gynaecological appointment?
Dr Archna Saraswat: If a patient is coming for a particular type of procedure, like a Mirena insertion or a treatment of abnormal contraction stress test, some preparations are required. It is specific to the needs of each patient. If it's just a general consultation, there are no preparations needed.
Question: Can you talk us through how you focus on a holistic approach to women's pelvic health?
Dr Archna Saraswat: It's all about our team's personalised approach to each patient. If they come for polycystic ovaries treatment, then it might be dieticians whom can assist. If it's a prolapse, we might get the women's health physio involved. If the patient suffers with vulvodynia, we could have a psychologist involved. All in all, women's pelvic health really comes to down to what all women should do and that is to make sure that you stay as healthy as possible.
Question: What's next for Northside Gynaecology?
Dr Archna Saraswat: We want to expand so more women of the greater Brisbane area can have access to our services.
Interview by Brooke Hunter