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OBGY715 Medical Gynaecology I

Well women care, fertility regulation, screening in women’s health, menstrual disorders, abnormal vaginal bleeding, vaginal discharge, vulval disorders, pelvic pain, climacteric and hormone replacement.

OBGY 715 gives a grounding beyond undergraduate training in women's reproductive health issues, covering adolescent health, screening for sexually transmitted infections and common presentations, such as menstrual disorders, vulval disorders and menopausal issues.

Paper title Medical Gynaecology I
Paper code OBGY715
Subject Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points 18 points
Teaching period(s) 1st Non standard period (28 January 2020 - 25 March 2020), 2nd Non standard period (23 June 2020 - 19 August 2020)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,714.50
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $6,217.80

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OBGX 715
Limited to
(i) This paper is designed for the continuing professional education of health professionals involved in the provision of women's health care, and is also a compulsory paper for the Postgraduate Diploma in Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology. (ii) Limited to 30 students per semester. (iii) For more information:

Recommended for general practitioners (GPs) and GP registrars and sexual health physicians, and those doctors considering a future in sexual and reproductive health, general practice, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics or emergency medicine. Suitable for midwives, practice nurses, family planning and public health nurses.

Enrolments for this paper are limited and require departmental permission. View more information about limitations of enrolment.

Amanda Phillips: Women's and Children's Health Distance Learning Co-ordinator
Tel 03 470 9688
Teaching staff

Convenor: Dr Helen Paterson
Teaching Staff: Dr Karyn Johnson, Dr Celia Devenish, Dr Fali Langdana, Dr Dean Maharaj

Paper Structure
One of four distance-taught papers that are offered as part of Postgraduate Certificate in Women's Health (PGCertWHlth) and Postgraduate Diploma in Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology (PGDipOMG) programmes
Teaching Arrangements

Consists of six 2-hour Tuesday evening audioconferences on Zoom conducted fortnightly over eight  weeks

N1: Tuesday, 28 January - Thursday, 19 March 2020
Examination: Wednesday, 25 March 2020 in the evening, in the town/city you nominated as your semester address

N2: Tuesday, 23 June - Thursday, 6 August 2020
Examination: Wednesday, 19 August 2020 in the evening, in the town/city you nominated as your semester address

Introduction to Obstetrics and Gynaecology, by Professor Cindy Farquhar and Associate Professor Helen Roberts
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Lifelong learning.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Sexual Health and Screening/ Sexually Transmitted Diseases

  • The development of a knowledge base that enables you to give good advice on screening programmes and self-care.
  • An understanding of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including the epidemiology, pathophysiology, presentation, treatment, and long-term sequelae of common infections.
  • A working knowledge of history-taking, clinical examination, laboratory data interpretation, and public health measures.
  • Consistently promote ‘well women’ care.
  • List the areas where well women’s care may be appropriate.
  • List the elements of a well women’s clinic.
  • Recognise the importance of social issues such as gender issues, doctor-patient interactions, chaperone policies, and socio-economic factors affecting health care.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of screening programmes and their principles and application, especially with regard to cervical and breast screening programmes, but also opportunistic practice screening.
  • Describe the pathogens that cause vulval, vaginal, and cervical infections, and describe the types of vaginal discharge that occur with various pathogens.
  • Describe the epidemiology of sexually transmitted infections and laboratory test results, including false negative and false positive results.
  • Describe the contribution of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) to the aetiology of cervical cancer.
  • Describe the pathophysiology of pelvic inflammatory disease, treatment, and sequelae.
  • Counsel patients regarding sexually transmitted infections; outline and encourage behavioural change.
  • Describe the public health measures intended to control sexually transmitted infections such as contact tracing, surveillance, health promotion programmes, professional education and research.

Vulval Problems/Vaginal Discharge

  • List the symptoms of vulval disease.
  • List the conditions of the vulva that cause disease, including candidiasis, herpes, condylomata acuminata, parasite infections, contact dermatitis, Bartholin’s gland abscess, hypertrophic and hypotrophic dystrophies, disorders of pigment, vulval carcinoma, and syphilis.
  • Inspect the vulva and identify common vulval lesions.
  • Take scrapings and perform tissue biopsies of lesions.
  • Order and interpret investigations to refine the diagnosis of vulval lesions.
  • Draw the histological features of normal vulval skin and those of hypertrophic and hypotrophic dystrophies.
  • List the general and specific treatments for vulval disease.
  • Give long-term support to those with chronic vulval disease.
  • Assess and manage vulval trauma.
  • Assess and manage perineal and vulval pain syndromes.
  • Describe the pathogens that cause vulval, vaginal, and cervical infections.
  • Describe the types of vaginal discharge that occur with various pathogens, and their treatment.
  • Make the links between infectious agents and malignancy of the reproductive tract.

Menstrual Disorders: Hysterectomy/Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding

  • Draw diagrams illustrating the mechanism of normal menstruation, including the events of the hypothalamus — pituitary — ovarian — endometrial cycle and their interrelationships, feedback mechanisms, and histology.
  • List the common organic and non-organic causes of menstrual disorders, and describe their clinical features.
  • Describe the management options for common menstrual disorders.
  • Advise women with polycystic ovarian syndrome on the diagnosis and management of this condition, and the implications for their future health.
  • Draw a diagram of the ovulatory cycle showing the physiological and pathological hormone variations and histological changes in the endometrium in the normal cycle and in cases of heavy menstrual bleeding.
  • List the types of heavy menstrual bleeding.
  • Diagnose and manage patients presenting with abnormal uterine bleeding.
  • List the causes of organic bleeding of the female reproductive tract, including endometrial polyps; submucous fibroids; infections of the endometrium, cervix, and vagina; and cancers of the endometrium, cervix, and vagina.
  • Diagnose and manage organic causes of bleeding of the female reproductive tract.

Menstrual Disorders: Pelvic Pain

  • Describe the pathophysiology of premenstrual syndrome.
  • Describe the clinical presentation, assessment and management of premenstrual syndrome.
  • List the common abnormalities of the vaginal introitus, and describe their clinical features and management.
  • Describe the pathology of endometriosis and adenomyosis.
  • List the clinical features and management options for endometriosis and adenomyosis.
  • Compare the pathophysiology, clinical features and management of primary and secondary dysmenorrhoea.
  • List the non-organic causes of pelvic pain, and describe the peripheral appreciation, onward transmission and central processing of pain.

and Hormone Therapy (Climacteric)

  • List the physiological changes and symptoms associated with the climacteric.
  • Outline management strategies, including preventative measures, for the climacteric woman.
  • List the benefits and risks of hormone therapy (HT).
  • Describe and give advice on the different types of HT regimens and their indication(s) for use.
  • List the investigations advised prior to a patient taking hormone therapy.
  • Outline advice you would give to the climacteric woman who wishes to take ‘natural’ therapies.
  • Evaluate the appropriateness of HT use for bone protection.

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1st Non standard period (28 January 2020 - 25 March 2020)

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system

2nd Non standard period (23 June 2020 - 19 August 2020)

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system