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NMMC Women's Hospital - Women's Health Concerns

Women's Health Concerns

NOW MORE THAN EVER, women are raising their consciousness of the unique needs and challenges they face in managing their own health. They have begun to play a stronger role in their care and are asking questions about their health and their health care providers. The many affiliates and services of North Mississippi Medical Center recognize this and offer a variety of women's health services throughout north Mississippi, northwest Alabama and portions of southwest Tennessee. Dedicated to caring for a woman's health throughout her life, these programs focus on every aspect of well-being.

Primary Care

Your first level of care at any age. A primary care physician is one who assumes overall responsibility for a patient's medical care. While primary physicians do not treat every medical problem, they do determine if a patient should be referred to a specialist (such as a surgeon or cardiologist) for further care.

Family Medicine Physicians offer continuing and comprehensive health care services to people of all ages. Family physicians care for women's general health care needs, from routine cervical cancer and breast cancer screenings, to family planning and menopause issues.

Internal Medicine Physicians diagnose and treat diseases in adults, typically from the middle teens on up. Some internists have pursued additional training in the area of women's health concerns.

Obstetrics-Gynecology. Obstetrics involves caring for a woman from preconception (when a woman is planning to become pregnant) through labor and childbirth, and after the baby is born. Gynecology covers a woman's special health care from puberty through menopause, and includes issues ranging from nutrition to hormones.

Obstetrician-gynecologists are physicians who specialize in women's general medical care, treatment of disorders of the female reproductive system, and care of pregnant women. They also provide a wide range of gynecological surgery options.

Pediatrics. Mothers do everything they can to help their children stay well and happy. So do we.
  • Area pediatricians provide comprehensive care for children and adolescents
  • Satellite clinics by pediatric subspecialists from Le Bonheur Children's Hospital
  • Specialty pediatric specialists affiliated with the University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Pediatric speech, physical and occupational therapy
  • NMMC's Home Health Agency staff with specialty training in pediatrics

For the name and phone number of a North Mississippi Medical Center physician near you, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375).

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Symptoms of anxiety include difficulty sleeping, outbursts of anger, difficulty concentrating and irritability. Anxiety causes a woman to feel nervous or "on guard" and easily startled. The NMMC Behavioral Health Center offers individualized treatment based on the severity of symptoms and level of function. For help with anxiety, call (662) 377-3161 or 1-800-442-2238.

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Your primary care physician may refer you a rheumatologist at the IMA-Tupelo Rheumatology and Osteoporosis Center. A rheumatologist is an internal medicine physician who specializes in treating rheumatoid diseases such as arthritis.

  • Physical and occupational therapy programs available by physician referral
  • Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program
  • Arthritis Foundation's Aquatic Program, a water-based exercise program for people with arthritis. For more information, call your local NMMC Wellness Center:

Baldwyn     (662)365-7873

Hamilton, Ala.      (205) 921-2997
Iuka      (662) 423-1980

Pontotoc      (662) 489-1335
Tupelo      (662) 377-4141
West Point      (662) 495-9355

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Back Problems

Chronic back and neck pain can keep you from doing the things you love. At the NMMC Spine Center, board-certified neurosurgeons focus on minimally-invasive surgery, pain management, rehabilitation and non-surgical treatment options to help you recover faster than you thought possible.


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Breast Health

  • Medical and surgical services provided by qualified physician
  • Screening & diagnostic mammograms, breast ultrasound, galactography
  • Breast health navigator

For mammogram information, call:

NMMC (662) 377-4158

NMMC-Eupora (662) 258-6221

NMMC-Iuka (662) 423-4502

NMMC-West Point (662) 495-2331

North Mississippi Medical Center-Hamilton (205) 921-6280


  • Breast cancer patient navigator and breast health specialists at NMMC Breast Care Center
  • Mammotome® Breast Biopsy System, a technologically advanced device that is used for stereotactic breast biopsy, an alternative to open surgical breast biopsy
  • Ultrasound-directed biopsy and cyst aspiration allows physicians to obtain a small sample of suspicious breast tissue or fluid during a diagnostic ultrasound study. This eliminates the need for a separate biopsy procedure.
  • Sentinel lymph node biopsy to diagnose the spread of breast cancer by examining one or two lymph nodes to which the cancer might first spread
  • Manual lymphatic treatment for lymphedema
  • For more information, call (662) 377-4910

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Since 1991, NMMC has provided a full scope of services to diagnose, treat and help prevent cancer.

  • Approved by the American College of Surgeons' Commission on Cancer
  • Radiation oncology accredited by American College of Radiology
  • Teaching Hospital Cancer Program
  • Access to clinical trials
  • Chemotherapy provided by medical oncologists
  • Three-dimensional treatment planning to pinpoint exact location of tumors and minimize radiation doses to uninvolved organs and tissues
  • Conformal therapy, external radiotherapy in which the prescribed dose volume is made to conform closely to the tumor volume
  • Brachytherapy, internal radiation treatment given by implanting radioactive material directly into the tumor or very close to it
  • Joyce B. Atwell Cancer Resource Library
  • Social services
  • Nutrition counseling
  • Personal needs retail center
  • Support groups and programs
  • Transportation assistance

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  • Unlike grief or passing sadness, does not usually respond to changes in circumstances or go away with time
  • Can last for months or years if not treated
  • Can result in disruption of relationships and professional productivity, disability or even death
  • Help for postpartum depression, a common problem following the birth of a child

The NMMC Behavioral Health Center offers individualized treatment based on the severity of symptoms and level of function. For help with depression, call (662) 377-3161 or 1-800-442-2238.

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NMMC's Diabetes Treatment Center, located at IMA-Tupelo, is dedicated to helping women with diabetes better understand their disease and inform them of new medications and technologies.

  • One of only three Diabetes Centers of Excellence in Mississippi recognized by the American Diabetes Association
  • Diabetes treatment and consultation services for all ages

For more information, call (662) 377-2500.

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Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence

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Eating Disorders

Many people, especially women, have disordered eating behaviors and unhealthy attitudes about food, weight and body image. With the proper treatment, women can gain control over disorders which are caused by a preoccupation with food. The NMMC Behavioral Health Center offers individualized treatment based on the severity of symptoms and level of function. For help with an eating disorder, call (662) 377-3161 or 1-800-442-2238.


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Women today often find themselves "sandwiched" between two generations which require a great deal of their time and energy. With people living longer and couples having children later in life, many middle-aged women are caring for their own children while tending to aging parents in need of attention. The NMMC Behavioral Health Center treats adults of all ages in its inpatient and outpatient programs. For older adults, the facility offers outpatient individual, marital and group counseling. Also, psychologists provide special testing to determine the causes of problematic symptoms, such as memory loss, motor skill changes and mood disturbances. After the testing, follow-up recommendations are offered to the patient and family, with the option for further collaboration and teamwork with physicians and other health care providers."

In addition, NMMC Home Health's mental health specialists serve patients in a 17-county area. For more information on any of these services, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375).

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Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a condition where stomach acid backs up into the lower esophagus two or more times a week. Symptoms may range from heartburn and chest pain to unexplained choking, coughing and hoarseness and, if left untreated, may lead to esophageal cancer. NMMC’s Heartburn Center of Mississippi at the Center for Digestive Health can help. For more information, call (662) 377-5792 or 1-877-825-0068.


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Heart Disease

Heart disease is an equal opportunity killer. Fortunately, there's much you can do to help protect yourself from the leading cause of death among American women. Since 1981, the NMMC Heart Institute has pioneered many diagnostic and treatment technologies. NMMC has one of the most experienced programs in the region, performing more than 10,000 cardiology procedures and 1,000 heart and lung surgeries each year.

NMMC is a Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Blue Distinction Center of Excellence for Cardiac Care. This designation recognizes hospitals and physicians that demonstrate high levels of performance in delivering quality specialty care to their patients safely, efficiently and in a cost-effective manner. Centers of Excellence are chosen based on national criteria around quality, cost and total value.

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Hormone Replacement Therapy

As a woman ages, her body begins to slow its production of estrogen, a hormone that seems to protect women from heart disease and osteoporosis.

  • HRT helps control hot flashes, insomnia and other symptoms and helps protect a woman from heart disease and bone loss.
  • Ask your primary care physician about available treatment.

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Women of all ages experience bladder control problems. It is important to realize that incontinence is a medical problem and no cause for shame. Nearly every woman with a bladder control problem can be helped. Ask your physician, gynecologist or urologist - a physician who specializes in bladder problems - about treatment options.

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Starting a family is one of the most exciting times a couple will experience – but that excitement can quickly turn to frustration and stress when months begin to tick by without getting pregnant. Nationwide 10 to 15 percent of all couples will face infertility issues, and many will be diagnosed with a reproductive disorder. Thankfully, advances in reproductive technology now mean that the vast majority of couples struggling to have a family can be successful given a little help. Infertility consultations and new patient visits are available by appointment at NMMC’s Longtown Medical Park in Tupelo. For appointment information with a reproductive endocrinologist, call (901) 747-2229 or 1-800-843-3375. 

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Joint Replacement

Women who have knee or hip replacement surgery at NMMC-Tupelo benefit from the services of the Joint Replacement Center. The center uses a team approach to surgical care, ensuring a smooth transition from pre-op through recovery. The health care team works together for a common goal: your good health. The center offers educational seminars that help women replace their fears with facts about joint replacement. For more information, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375).

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Maternal Fetal Medicine

When a pregnancy is potentially high risk because of age or pre-existing medical conditions, both mother and child need a special kind of care. Maternal Fetal Medicine is available in this region exclusively at North Mississippi Medical Center.

A high-risk pregnancy is one in which some condition puts the mother, the baby or both at an increased risk for complications during or after pregnancy and birth. A woman’s ob-gyn may refer her to a maternal fetal specialist for many reasons—including managing multiple gestations (complex twins, triplets or more); monitoring preeclampsia or incompetent cervix; counseling for age-related risks, screening for Down syndrome and other issues.

Some women require a single consultation before or during pregnancy to help them prepare. Others may need regular prenatal visits to the maternal fetal specialist to monitor their condition or perform fetal assessments with ultrasound. For more information, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) or click here.


Menopause and its associated estrogen loss bring special health considerations.

  • Symptoms such as night sweats, hot flashes and vaginal dryness
  • Health concerns such as osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer's disease and colon cancer
  • Ask your primary care physician about available treatment

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Many women use the word "migraine" to describe a particularly painful headache. Migraine is certainly that, and a lot more. Fortunately, physicians can offer hope to migraine sufferers. For more information, consult your physician or contact Neurology Consultants of Tupelo.

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As a woman ages, she begins to lose more bone than her body makes. This process weakens her bones and increases the risk that they will fracture or break.

For more information on the various osteoporosis programs and services available, call  1-800-843-3375.

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Women are vitally concerned about the health and well-being of their children, and they usually bear the burden of getting help when emotional, behavioral or learning problems appear. Evaluation and treatment through the NMMC Behavioral Health Center can help families cope with substance abuse and other emotional or behavioral disturbances.

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Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

Cosmetic surgery can provide numerous benefits to improve your looks, attitude and sense of self-esteem.

  • Plastic and reconstructive surgeons can alter portions of the face or body in shape or form.
  • A variety of aesthetic services such as skin care, chemical peels, treatment for pigmentation problems and other conditions
  • For a plastic or reconstructive surgeon near you, call 1-800-843-3375 or click here to "Find a Physician."

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Pregnancy - NMMC Maternity Services

We want to help make bringing your child into the world a magical and memorable event. North Mississippi Medical Center offers expectant moms more than they expect:
  • Obstetricians care for normal and high-risk pregnancies at NMMC Women's Hospital in Tupelo, one of the few freestanding hospitals in Mississippi dedicated to women's health, and at NMMC-West Point.
  • Prepared childbirth classes in Tupelo, Iuka and West Point.
  • Sibling and breastfeeding education programs
  • Ultrasound and other newborn studies
  • Family-centered care with freedom to choose the birth experience most meaningful to parents in a home-like environment
  • Certified lactation consultants and breastfeeding educators
  • NMMC Women's Hospital neonatal intensive care unit with equipment, facilities and specialty staff for 50 critically ill newborns
  • Board-certified maternal fetal specialist
  • Board-certified neonatologists
  • Air and ground transport teams for critically ill newborns
  • Telemedicine consultations with pediatric subspecialists at Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center
  • Local access to board-certified fertility specialist

For the name and phone number of a North Mississippi Medical Center physician near you, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) or click here to "Find a Physician."

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Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse can be physical, verbal or emotional, and its long-term emotional and psychological damage can be devastating. It can lead to low self-esteem, feelings of worthlessness, difficulty relating to others, withdrawal or even suicide. The NMMC Behavioral Health Center offers individualized treatment for victims of sexual assault. For more information, call (662) 377-3161 or 1-800-442-2238.

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Sexually Transmitted Diseases

For a woman, a sexually transmitted disease can be a time bomb. Many of these diseases can lead to infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease, cervical cancer and other health problems. If you have any questions, consult your physician.

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Skin Conditions

Dermatologists have extensive training and experience in diagnosing and treating skin cancers, melanomas, moles, contact dermatitis and other skin conditions. Dermatologists also help women with cosmetic skin disorders, such as hair loss, nail problems and scars. To find a dermatologist near you, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) or click here to "Find a Physician."

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Sleep Disorders

At least 40 million Americans each year suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders, and an additional 20 million experience occasional sleeping problems. These disorders and the resulting sleep deprivation interfere with work, driving and social activities. Doctors have described more than 70 sleep disorders, most of which can be managed effectively once they are correctly diagnosed. The most common sleep disorders include insomnia, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome and narcolepsy. NMMC's Sleep Disorders Center in Tupelo, accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, is equipped with the latest diagnostic tools and staffed with highly trained technicians and board-certified physicians. Sleep labs are also available at NMMC-Eupora, NMMC-Iuka and NMMC-West Point. Physician referral is required.

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A stroke is similar to a heart attack. It occurs when a blood vessel bringing oxygen and nutrients to the brain bursts or is clogged by a blood clot or some other particle. Treat every warning sign of stroke as an emergency and get treatment immediately. The NMMC Acute Stroke Unit can help you identify your risks and change the modifiable ones.

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Substance Abuse

The NMMC Behavioral Health Center can help individuals struggling with alcohol and drug problems, as well as provide information to family members and friends on how they can help. For more information, call (662) 377-3161 or 1-800-442-2238.

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Through the hormones it produces, the thyroid gland influences almost all of the metabolic processes in your body. If you feel unusually sluggish or restless, the problem may be a thyroid disorder. To find an endocrinologist near you, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) or click here to "Find a Physician."

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  • Flu Shot
    Every year to prevent the flu
  • Pneumococcal Vaccine
    Once around age 65 to prevent pneumococcal pneumonia
  • Tetanus Shot
    Every 10 years to prevent tetanus, a serious bacterial infection

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Varicose Veins


The NMMC Vein Center offers treatment for varicose veins, spider veins, venous ulceration and inflammation, and other issues affecting veins of the leg.

Healthy leg veins contain valves that open and close to assist the return of blood back to the heart. When these valves become diseased, individuals may suffer from:

  • Varicose veins
  • Pain
  • Swollen limbs
  • Leg heaviness and fatigue
  • Skin changes
  • Ulcers


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Weight Loss Surgery

More than half of all Americans are obese. The NMMC Bariatric Center realizes that obesity increases the risk for several health problems, some of which can be fatal. Surgery may be an option for severely obese patients who haven’t been able to maintain weight loss using other methods.

NMMC sponsors a monthly Weight Loss Support Group for individuals who have had or are contemplating weight loss surgery. For more information about surgical options or the support group, call (662) 377-7546.

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Diet and Exercise

A woman who exercises regularly and eats healthy foods feels better. She also faces a lower risk of health problems, including heart disease, osteoporosis, hypertension and diabetes.

  • One-on-one outpatient nutritional counseling provided by clinical dietitians throughout NMMC
  • Help with diabetic meal planning, weight reduction, prenatal nutrition and gestational diabetes management
  • Instruction for managing diets low in sodium and cholesterol, and high in fiber
  • Group nutrition classes for weight loss and cholesterol reduction
  • Wellness facilities throughout NMMC with a wide variety of exercise equipment and classes for all ages and fitness levels
  • Free community health programs

For more information on NMMC Wellness Centers or Live Well programs available, call:

Eupora            (662) 258-6221
Hamilton, Ala. (205) 921-2997
Iuka                (662) 423-6051
Pontotoc         (662) 489-1335
Tupelo            (662) 377-4141
West Point      (662) 495-9355


Therapeutic Day Spa

The NMMC Wellness Center in Tupelo offers a Therapeutic Day Spa that promotes well-being in a quiet, serene setting. Services include facials, body treatments, massage therapy, manicure/pedicure, aroma therapy, yoga and herbal consultation. NMMC Wellness Centers in Baldwyn, Iuka, Pontotoc and West Point offer massage therapy, and some offer additional spa services. Call your local Wellness Center or 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) for more information.

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When to See Your Physician

The best prevention is early detection. Schedule these important health tests by age and frequency as recommended.

Blood Pressure

  • To check whether your blood pressure is too high 21 and over, at least once every two years and more often if directed by physician.

Blood Sugar (Glucose)

  • To check your blood sugar levels
  • Every three to five years

Bone Density Scan

  • To check the thickness of your bones
  • As directed by physician

Breast Self-Exam

  • To detect changes in breast tissue or appearance
  • 20 and over, monthly


  • To check amount of different types of fat in your blood
  • Every five years or as directed by physician

Clinical Breast Exam

  • To look for changes and feel for any lumps
  • 20-39, every three years;
  • 40 and over, annually

Dental Check-Up

  • To check for cavities and gum disease
  • 18 and over, annually or as directed by dentist

Digital Rectal Exam

  • To screen for colorectal cancer
  • 40 and over, annually


  • To test heart function
  • 18 and over, as directed by physician

Eye Exam

  • To check your vision and look for other conditions, such as cataracts or glaucoma
  • 18 and over, annually or as directed by physician

Fecal Occult Blood

  • To screen for colorectal cancer
  • 50 and over, annually

Hearing Test

  • To check how well you hear
  • As part of routine physical exam


  • To look for changes too small to be felt in breast tissue with either a clinical or breast self-exam
  • 40 and over, annually

Pelvic Exam and Pap Smear

  • To detect uterine abnormalities and changes in other female organs
  • 18 and over, annually or as directed by physician

Routine Physical Exam

  • To maintain health and catch problems early
  • 18 and over, as directed by physician

Skin Cancer Checkups

  • To check for changes in any moles or for growths or sores that don't heal
  • Self-exams at least every three months; clinical exams as part of routine physical exam


  • To screen for colorectal cancer
  • 50 and over, every three to five years

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Additional Services


The Appointment Desk, 1-800-843-3375, is a free physician referral service. All calls are answered by referral specialists who provide timely appointments with NMMC health care providers. The Appointment Desk is operational 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Nurse Link®

Nurse Link®, 1-800-882-6274, is a free telephone health information service. Callers speak directly to a registered nurse and get immediate answers. Using computerized medical protocols, nurses direct callers to the most appropriate medical treatment.

Support Groups

NMMC recognizes that women need the support of other women who are in similar situations. For this reason, a number of support groups are available throughout the health care system to allow women to discuss personal concerns, issues and feelings. For more information about local support groups, click here.