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Review our collection of videos covering health information topics

Cervical cancer 101 with Houston Moms

In honor of cervical cancer awareness month, which is recognized every January, OBGYN Dr. Marisol Carpio-Solis took some time out of her schedule to talk through the disease with our partners at Houston Moms about the disease.

Impacting the lower part of the uterus known as the cervix, cervical cancer is screened through a pap smear. The routine test, which is carried out on a sample of cells from the cervix, checks for abnormalities that may be indicative of cervical cancer.  

If a reading comes back abnormal or showing signs of cancer, a colposcopy is done to make a formal diagnosis.

Early stages of the disease often have no telling signs or symptoms, but individuals with advanced cases may experience abnormal bleeding or pelvic pain. 

Over 97% of cervical cancer cases stem from the human papilloma virus (HPV), so vaccination against the disease is urged in both male and female individuals ages 9 to 45.  

Health care providers follow the recommended number of vaccine doses, based on the individual's age:  

  • Individuals between the ages of 9-14: two shots  
  • Individuals who are 15 years of age or older: three shots 

Should someone be diagnosed with cervical cancer, treatment options will vary. Sometimes it’s curable with a hysterectomy; other times chemotherapy and radiation are required. 

To learn more, watch the full discussion.  

Breast self awareness and screenings

Breast health radiologist Dr. Angelica Robinson and OBGYN Dr. Crystal Alvarez joined Meagan Clanahan, co-owner of Houston Moms, to discuss the latest guidelines surrounding screening mammograms, as well as the recommendation for patients to be "breast self-aware."

During the conversation, the women discussed a variety of topics including: 

  • The role OBGYNs play in helping a patient stay on top of their breast health
  • What "breast self-awareness" means
  • Screening mammography guidelines
  • Tips for women with dense breast tissue
  • 3D mammograms

To learn more, watch the full video interview. 

Prostate cancer treatment options

According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. About 1 out of every 41 men will die of it.

These statistics are why members of the UTMB Health Urology team are so passionate about spreading information about the sometimes-silent disease.Headshot of Dr. Laith Alzweri, male physician wearing white coat, black-frame glasses, a light blue shirt and a red and white tie.

"When they are aware of the disease, men are more likely to seek help from physicians and have conversations about it,” says Dr. Laith Alzweri, surgeon and associate professor within the Department of Surgery’s Urology Division. 

Dr. Stephen Williams, a clinical leader and professor within the departments of Surgery and Radiology, wants patients to know that if they do end up with a positive diagnosis for prostate cancer, there’s lots of options for next steps, but it’s key to have a care team you can trust to guide you throughout the process.

Dr. Stephen Williams on prostate treatment options


Here for patients from diagnosis through survivorship, the UTMB Health Men's Health team is passionate about ensuring patients don’t just survive, but that they thrive before, during and after treatments they receive. 

“Life doesn’t end or stop when you have cancer,” he says.



Nipple tattoos bring patients closure, help them feel whole

UTMB Health Nurse Practitioner Jill Resendez plays an important role in the lives of breast cancer survivors who opt for reconstructive services through the UTMB Health Division of Plastic Surgery.

To help bring closure to the journey these patients have undergone while fighting for their lives, Resendez offers nipple and areola tattooing services. The goal: help patients feel whole again.

Resendez had wanted to be a fashion designer. But watching her own mother fight and lose her own battle with breast cancer motivated the then high-school senior to go into health care. She got the idea to offer this service when she graduated as a nurse practitioner just as the world was shutting down due to COVID.

With traditional training programs on hold because of the pandemic, Resendez perfected her technique at a local tattoo shop during an eight-month apprenticeship before providing the service to patients. Today, she regularly has the privilege of closing the breast cancer chapter for UTMB Health breast reconstruction patients like Norma Garcia.

“I forget when I look in the mirror that there’s even reconstruction going on,” Garcia says. “She made me feel very whole.”

UTMB Health patient Christal Kuehler just reached what she calls the end of her journey this October, when Resendez completed her tattoos. Just before the procedure, Kuehler had only one thought. “I’m going to be complete,” she said.