I specialize in comprehensive care for all ages of women, from adolescence through our 9th decade. Comprehensive, thorough physical exams, with a special attention to breast health, has always been included in my patient care. Standards of health care screening as well as appropriate medical testing as desired by individual women is offered. Education regarding wellness-promoting life style choices and nutrition as well as integration of psychological counseling, traditional Chinese medicine and complementary healing practices into main stream health care are central aspects of my practice as a gynecologist. Contraception, family planning, disease risk reduction (nutrition, healthy life style) and appropriate health screening are incorporated into patient care as appropriate and desired.
My career is focused on healthy aging in women, including hormone replacement therapy using primarily bio-identical hormones, and reducing risks for functional loss and dependency. I specialize in the endocrinology of menopause and disease risk reduction as reflected in individual patient care options and clinical management decision-making, with an emphasis on breast cancer early detection, diagnosis, treatment options and ongoing cancer survivor care.Further insight into the depth of our need to nurture ourselves throughout a woman’s life is fueled by having delivered over 1,500 babies in addition to being a mother myself. From babyhood to adulthood, we all deserve compassionate, kind and patient attention to our individual needs.
I have committed to becoming more active in the politics of medicine, hoping to preserve the very special nature of the physician patient relationship as well as promoting greater collegiality through all sectors of health care. I serve on the Board of American Society of Breast Disease. I also serve on the Board of the California Institute of Integral Studies, a University offering bachelor’s degree completion, Masters and PhDs (see www.CIIS.edu). For 15 years I served on the board of the Patient Assistance Foundation whose job it is to raise money for health education, social services and financial counseling for those in need. I am a member of the following professional organizations: American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG). Fellow, 1984 to present. American Society for Reproductive Medicine, 1983 to present North American Menopause Society, 1992 to present American Society of Breast Disease, 1994 to present California Medical Association: San Francisco Medical Society, 1981 to present. Editorial Board, 1998-present. Editor in Chief, 1999- 2001. The American Medical Writers Association, 1994-2000. My academic appointments include: Volunteer Clinical faculty at UC San Francisco (Women’s Hormones and Mood Clinic, Department of Psychiatry) former faculty at the University of Arizona School of Medicine (associate professor for the “Current issues in women and children’s health” course) and adjunct teaching in the Integral Health Studies Program of the California Institute of Integral Studies (see www.CIIS.edu master’s program in Integral Health).
As part of community outreach, I enjoy appearing on television, as a regular women’s health guest expert on local and national television and radio programs as well as public lectures. Professional continuing education seminars for doctors, nurses, physician assistants and psychologists continue to be a regular part of my professional activities
My hobbies include savory cooking and baking, having held a job as pastry chef assistant during college and never losing my enthusiasm for good organic home cooking. I also enjoy music (when I can practice, I play viola in chamber music groups and sing soprano), reading a diversity of philosophical and historical writers, bike riding and hiking to explore nature and the world.
My books include “The Pocket Guide to Bioidentical Hormones,” Alpha Press 2010, and “Mother Nurture,” with Rick and Jan Hanson, Penguin, 2002.
Born in Boston, MA, I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area at age 4. Growing up in suburban Walnut Creek in the 50’s and 60’s I witnessed the shift in social structures and mother’s roles first hand. An avid baby sitter from age 12, I learned early about the struggles of the working professional mother. Highly impressed by a neighbor who was a mother, wife and pediatrician, at age 8 I knew I wanted to be a doctor. The needs of women, especially those engaged in the process of raising children, have captivated my professional interest throughout my career. I was educated at public schools, from kindergarten through attending UC Berkeley, where I earned a BA in Zoology-Immunology, followed by a Master’s degree in Health Sciences, also at UC Berkeley. I then received my M.D. from UC San Francisco, and became board certified as an obstetrician-gynecologist in 1981.As a leader in the practice of integrative medicine in women’s health care., I have continued to expand my knowledge of alternative and complementary therapies in service to my patients. I am a former Chief of the Division of Gynecology at the California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC), in addition to being the chair of the implementation task force and founding director for Education for CPMC’s Breast Health Center.
I live and work in the beautiful city of San Francisco. In 1994 I stopped delivering babies, with a desire to be home more with my own (then) 11 year old daughter, appreciating that to nurture my own nest I could no longer do Obstetrics with its irregular hours and frequent emergencies. I continue to have the pleasure of assisting my patients with their early infant and self care post partum, as well as taking care of them (and now many of their daughters whom I delivered!) through many fruitful years of motherhood.