Perhaps the most transformational time in a woman’s life is when she becomes a mother, observed Kalie Li, D.O., an OB/GYN for NorthBay Health.
“It’s such a huge milestone for a woman. Life is now so different and there are a lot of unexpected things that may occur. The arrival of the first child is such a shock to your world, but is good in many good ways, definitely,” Dr. Li said. “For me as a physician, it’s rewarding to be able be supportive. And I can relate, because I’m the parent of three children under the age of 5. I try to talk to my patients in a way that provides that extra support.”
The team at NorthBay Health Women’s Services offers women a full range of specialized care, from pre-puberty to menopause and everything in between: infertility, pregnancy and delivery, pelvic pain, abnormal bleeding and hormone-related changes. There can be a lot to follow, Dr. Li explained, and that is exactly the appeal for her as a medical professional.
“The best part of my job is being able to establish a relationship with my patients that will go across their lifetimes. It’s huge and rewarding for me to be part of all those life transitions.”
NorthBay Health Medical Center has long had a reputation for being a safe, comfortable place to have a baby and that’s by design, according to Heather Troutt, director, Women’s Services.
“We’re Solano County’s only ‘Baby Friendly’ hospital, which means we have specially trained staff to educate, encourage and support our new moms in their breastfeeding experiences. We take the designation very seriously and our entire team strives to assure that this is the best place for our families to welcome their newest member.”
NorthBay’s Labor & Delivery Unit has become a very busy place in recent months, as Sutter Solano closed its Labor & Delivery services, and David Grant Medical Center is on divert for maternity services, at least through the fall. As a result, many new moms and dads are choosing to deliver at NorthBay, rather than going out of the county, according to Heather.
One of them was Jessica Butler who, with husband Robert, came to NorthBay Health Medical Center to deliver their second daughter via cesarean section. Andrew Lin, M.D., delivered little Eliza in early June.
“We wanted Dr. Lin to deliver our baby here, because he delivered our daughter, Margaret Jean, almost four years ago,” Jessica said.
“It was a great experience,” the new dad recalled. “Everything and everyone was great, calm, peaceful.” Just two days after delivery, Jessica was up and ready to be discharged home.
NorthBay’s reputation for offering new moms and dads a safe, comfortable place to have a baby at the Fairfield facility is another bonus.
“We may be busy these days, but our team is also very good with communication,” Dr. Li noted. “It’s one of the things I like about working at NorthBay. The on-call doctor, the obstetrician/gynecologist and the pediatrician are all in open communication about mom and baby, so we have the whole back story. It means we can focus on the patient, in a comfortable and safe environment, which is a high priority.”
High Tech Care for Today’s Women
Back in the day, a hysterectomy meant a painful surgery, an abdominal scar, a hospital stay and a long recovery.
Not any more, thanks to advanced surgical technology available at NorthBay Health. Today the scenario is entirely different.
“My patients can go home the same day, and frequently with just Tylenol or ibuprofen, no narcotics,” says Dr. Li, who has added hysterectomies and other procedures to the long list of surgeries available with the da Vinci Xi Robotic Surgical system.
My patients can go home the same day, and frequently with just Tylenol or ibuprofen, no narcotics.”
Kalie Li, D.O., obstetrician/gynecologist
The da Vinci’s advanced technology allows surgeons to perform complex and delicate procedures with exceptional precision, but in a minimally invasive fashion. The system includes mechanical arms with surgical instruments attached, and a view of the surgical field through a 3D high-definition camera. The surgeon controls the mechanical arms while seated at a computer console near the operating table, with the rest of the surgical team at the patient’s bedside.
“With the da Vinci, I can use a 360 degree wrist motion; tactically, it’s more satisfying. I can also zoom in. I have a 3D image, and I can get in close with the camera and get a good view. And, for the patients, there’s less pain because there has been less manipulation that might occur with laparoscopy. When my patients learn their recovery is going to be quicker, with less blood loss and less post-op pain, they are naturally excited about that!”
NorthBay Center for Women’s Health currently has five surgeons who are certified to use the da Vinci, including Dr. Li and Marlene Freeman, M.D.
Stella Huang, D.O., and Shanna Snow, both obstetricians and gynecologists, are certified to assist.
For more information on Women’s Services, visit NorthBay.org/WomensServices.