Online Clinics

Online clinic on gynaecology

The online clinic on gynaecology run in March 2013 is now closed but you can still read through all the questions and answers.

Specialists in all aspects of gynaecology offered advice on the menopause, STIs, cervical cancer, menstruation and more.

The clinic was hosted by talkhealth and supported by Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust.

The experts

Mr Valentine Akande – MBBS PhD MRCOG

Mr Akande qualified in 1989 and has worked as a doctor in the NHS since 1991. In 2004 he was appointed consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at Southmead Hospital in Bristol, and honorary senior lecturer at the University of Bristol.

Mr Akande is the lead clinician and speciality director of fertility services at the Bristol Centre for Reproductive Medicine (BCRM) at Southmead Hospital. BCRM is one of the largest fertility centres in the UK, with consistently excellent outcomes within the top 10 in the UK.



Mr Hugh Byrne – BMedSc MB BCh BAO MRCOG

Mr Byrne specialises in obstetrics and gynaecology, and his specialist interests are in the management of benign gynaecological disorders such as infertility, pelvic pain, menstrual disorders, fibroids and endometriosis, as well as heavy or painful periods, surgical family planning and ovarian cysts (of any type).







Mr Robin Crawford – consultant gynaecological oncologist

Mr Crawford started at Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge in 1998 as a consultant gynaecological oncologist after working at Monash Medical Centre in Melbourne, Australia. He has wide experience in gynaecological surgery, both laparoscopic and open, and is the clinical director for gynaecology. The gynaecological cancer centre in Cambridge has seen improvements in survival of more than 30% over the last decade.

Mr Crawford has worked with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and has been a council member of the British Gynaecological Cancer Society. He has also worked with NICE on the cancer consideration panel and a tumour expert group. He is currently working with the Department of Health on a national project helping patients to get better and faster enhanced recovery. His work with Addenbrooke's Abroad is partnered with El Salvador, and he is co-chair of the National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN) comorbidity subgroup.

Dr James Thompson – GP

Dr Thompson is a UK-trained GP based in London and the East Midlands. He graduated from the University of Southampton medical school in 2005 and since then has worked as a freelance GP throughout the south of England and the Midlands.

James has a broad range of interests within healthcare and his approach to general practice is focused on encouraging and teaching better lifestyle choices. He also has interests in medical education and, in particular, communication skills.



Mr Stergios (Stelios) Doumouchtsis – consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist, subspecialist urogynaecologist MSc MPH PhD MRCOG

Mr Doumouchtsis is a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist in the department of obstetrics and gynaecology, urogynaecology and the Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery Unit at St George's Healthcare NHS Trust. He is the lead urogynaecologist consultant for childbirth injury and pelvic health after childbirth, and an honorary senior lecturer at St George's, University of London.

He is also a urogynaecologist who specialises in urogynaecology/female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, particularly in the prevention and treatment of childbirth injury, urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, cystitis and overactive bladder.

Mr Doumouchtsis studied medicine at the University of Athens medical school and qualified as a doctor of medicine (MD) in 1995. In 2004, he was awarded a PhD in surgical research. He did all his obstetrics and gynaecology training in the UK. After completing subspecialty training in urogynaecology at St George's Hospital, London, Mr Doumouchtsis was awarded an Ethicon Travel Award by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. He also worked as a visiting scholar at the University of Michigan, where he trained in robotic surgery and participated in research projects with the pelvic floor research group.

Dr Sarah Gray – primary care lead for women's health and cancer, NHS Cornwall

Dr Gray trained in London and was always interested in Women's Health. She went on to general practice in order to provide better care for women in a primary care setting. She still works regularly as a GP, but has specialist expertise and leads the NHS Menopause Service in Cornwall.

She is an authority on a range of problems, including teenage sexual health, periods, cyclical mood problems, pregnancy, contraception, menopause, osteoporosis and other related issues.

Dr Gray is the primary care lead for NHS Cornwall for both women's health and cancer. She has worked with NICE on guidance for heavy periods, and with other bodies to develop national guidance. She organises education and training for doctors and nurses on a range of topics, including contraception, bleeding problems, menopause and osteoporosis.

Mr Peter Greenhouse – MA MB BChir FRCOG FFSRHr

Mr Greenhouse qualified from Cambridge in 1979, trained in both venereology and gynaecology, and set up the UK's first integrated sexual health centre at Ipswich in 1991. He moved to Bristol in 1999, rebuilding and integrating services there and in Weston. He lectures internationally on all aspects of women's sexual health, particularly on chlamydia, pelvic infection and hormonal influences on genital infections.

Mr Greenhouse is chairman of the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) media committee, and is medical adviser to the Ectopic Pregnancy Trust and for Channel 4's Sex Education Show.


Sean Kehoe – MA MD DCH FRCOG

Sean Kehoe is Lawson-Tait professor of gynaecological cancer, University of Birmingham and senior research fellow at St Peter's College, Oxford.

He qualified from Trinity College Dublin and undertook various posts in Ireland to achieve membership of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (MRCOG). He moved to the UK and commenced research into ovarian cancer at the University of Birmingham, followed by a lectureship and RCOG subspeciality training in gynaecological oncology. He was appointed senior lecturer at the University of Birmingham and in 2002 was elected foundation professor of gynaecological cancer at the University of Oxford, and fellow of St Peter's college.

Mr Kehoe developed the Oxford Gynaecological Cancer Centre, serving the Thames Valley Region. He has published widely on gynaecological cancers and pre-cancers, with major research interests in ovarian cancer and clinical trials. He is president of the British Gynaecological Cancer Society and is on the editorial board of BJOG.

Dr Amanda Tristram – senior lecturer in gynaecological oncology

Dr Tristram is a senior lecturer in gynaecological oncology at Cardiff University, and honorary consultant in gynaecological oncology, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board. Her main research and clinical interests are in HPV, colposcopy, vulval disease and gynaecological oncology.

Dr Tristram is a member of the HPV Research Team within the section of obstetrics and gynaecology, and she is chief investigator for a multicentre clinical trial of topical treatment of vulval intraepithelial neoplasia (RT3 VIN), which is managed by the Wales Cancer Trials Unit. She also supervises MD and PhD students with non-clinical colleagues.

She is a member of the medical panel for Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust, a charity dedicated to women and their families affected by cervical cancer and cervical abnormalities.

Mr Mark Whiteley – consultant vascular surgeon

Mr Whiteley is a consultant vascular surgeon and clinic director of The Whiteley Clinic, who specialise in walk-in, walk-out surgery for varicose veins.

He trained at St Bartholomew's Hospital in London and was a lecturer in surgery at Oxford University. He was appointed consultant vascular surgeon in 1998 and performed the first endovenous keyhole surgery for varicose veins in the UK in March 1999. As the founder of The Whiteley Clinic and The Whiteley Protocol, his aim is to bring the very best treatments for varicose veins and vein problems, such as thread veins and leg ulcers, to the UK public.

Page last reviewed: 24/03/2013

Next review due: 24/03/2015


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The 5 comments posted are personal views. Any information they give has not been checked and may not be accurate.

irishtrish999 said on 01 June 2014

hi just read some comments etc but nothing showing in what I need help or answer too . im 34 yrs old I last had my period 6yrs ago and now I have gotten it again should I get checked out

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timebomb said on 06 May 2014

I have just reviewed the information given on NHS Choices about smear testing and want to ask the NHS website to reconsider how it provides information as it si not explicit enough. Even though I have had regular smear tests done most of my adult life I had never fully realised that cervical cancer was caused by a sexually transmitted virus - and it is only now that my 27 year old daughter has been diagnosed with advanced cancer that I have looked into the causes. Perhaps untypically she has been asymptomatic and it has taken th ehospital 3 months to identify the cause of the severe pain in her pelvic area.

It is only because of our persistence and some 15 trips to A&E, five admissions and countless trips to the GP and urgent care that the tumour has been found

She had told them that she had never had a smear test - so I am appalled that tthe clinicians seem not to learned anything from Jane Goodie's widely publicised story.

Please please please provide more information about the cause of cervical cancer and the life saving importance of screening. Call it something different for a start! Smear tests isnt exactly patient friendly language.... And offer to do them under local or general anaesthetic as they can be painful if the clinician isnt skillful.

Please find a way of getting women - and men - to understand that cervical cancer is sexually transmitted. And that its impact is no different from HIV/AIDS.

If not caught early enough it does spread to the liver and lungs....

Please work with the soaps to get information and public engagement - and make sure that schools reinforce this from an early age. The staff who teach sex education need to reinforce the importance of screening - and also need to be told that the virus can cause throat cancer via oral sex.

The global increase in cervical cancer is screaming out at us - we need to tackle this differently if we are to avoid the tragedy that families like mine are facing.

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Jessica19xo said on 04 September 2013

I found out I had an STI I think I had it for over a year before I started to have symptoms of having pain through sex I took my medicine and I was fine a few months later I was getting the same symptoms I took another STI test and it came back that I was fine so i had an examination the nurse said I had a lumpy cervix she didn't really go into anything more i was referred to a gynaecologist been on a 6 month waiting list I was just wondering if anyone can tell me a little bit more about my problem I am only 19 and I'm freaking out thanks.

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_anon101 said on 10 March 2013

I waxed once years ago and ever since I've been getting ingrown hairs all over my private parts. Sometimes up yo 3 at a time. On some of them I can pull the hairs out or squeeze them and they get better but not all the time. They also form scabs sometimes. Is there anything I can do to stop these ingrown hairs other than things like compression with a wet towel? They are unsightly and I still get them even if I don't shave often.

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Knonomus said on 08 March 2013

Ok I started my last normal period on the 6th feb which finished on the13th I then had to take
the emergency contraceptive pill on 15th and on the 18th bled for 3 day which I was told was normal. Had been feeling fine until Monday night when I got a sudden onset of lower abdominal pain on the right hand side which kept me up all night, had doctor out who said it wasn't appendicitis as the pain died down. But now I'm bleeding again and it's bright red. The pain has got worse this evening. Is It just a after effect of the pill or should I be worried?

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