Kristen A. Austin, M.D.Kristen A. Austin, M.D.
Gynecology, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Robotic Surgery
Bilateral Salpingo-Oophorectomy (Laparoscopic), Blood Management Techniques, Cervix Dysplasia, da Vinci (Robot-Assisted Surgery), Gynecological Surgery, Hysterectomy (Laparascopic Supracervical), Hysterectomy Total (Laparascopic), Hysterectomy Vaginal (Laparoscopic-assisted), Hysteroscopy, Incontinence (Female), Laparoscopic Surgery, Menstrual Disorders, Office Surgery & Procedures, Pelvic Organ Prolapse, Pelvic Relaxation Surgery, Pelvic Support Problems, Urogynecology
- Accepting Children: No
- Accepting New Patients: No
- Accepting Medicare: Yes
- Accepting Medicaid/DSHS: Yes
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I enjoy all aspects of women's care, but have a special interest in urogynecology. I believe that every woman has unique obstetric and gynecological needs and deserves individualized care.Personal Interests
I am a longtime Northwest resident. I am married, have 2 kids, and like to hike, sail and kayak.Medical School
Medical College of VirginiaResidency
Kaiser Hospitals Oakland, Northern CaliforniaBoard Certifications
Obstetrics & Gynecology
What a week. I wish I had been writing as the week progressed, but here we are, it is Sunday night, and I will try to capture the events and emotions.
This week the French were here. Three urogynecologists from Paris and Lyon came to the University of Gondar to help teach the faculty some advanced urogynecology techniques for patients with extreme pelvic organ prolapse. Dr Bertrand (“Bertie”), Dr Georges, and Dr Stephan are as French as French can be. I was delighted to try my French language skills and they were gracious enough to let me try. Their English was very good, but in true French form they would prefer to avoid using that language. The French and English have a long history of granting each other plenty of autonomy. These three were no exception. They are also fabulous surgeons. My interest was piqued, and I decided to Google one of their names. Dr Georges’ name surfaced to the top of a dozen prominent gynecology studies, and a few patents involving one of the most successful urinary incontinence procedures available today – worldwide. And here he was in Gondar, Ethiopia!
The residents had ..
It is 05:30 in the morning. I have been awake since 02:30am when Josh walked into our room, febrile and not feeling well. He was ready for his next dose of Tylenol. Yesterday he had his second febrile episode in as many weeks. I freaked out (a little) and decided to bring him in to be tested for malaria. For our $8.00 we were seen by the doctor in the urgent care clinic of the small hospital up the street, had labs drawn (CBC, malaria blood smear, typhus serum test), and were prescribed antibiotics for bacterial pharyngitis, probably strep throat.
But I digress. ...
Facebook is a wonderful thing. My birthday was a couple of days ago and I felt that I received more birthday greetings than I ever have before. Several people sent personal emails, and my parents even called on the phone. I send everyone a HUGE thank you for your well wishes. Life is challenging, and every encouraging remark helps.
Mark went a little crazy and organized a party at our apartment guest house with Josh, Sonja, Janis and Stephan, the other ex-pats living here. We had traditional Ethiopian food, delivered to the door, a couple bottles of wine, and a real birthday cake with candles. Mark decorated the room with a string of holiday lights and frilly banners. Nuru, our most trusted Bajaj driver, apparently drove Mark all around town to find candles at one shop, the cake at another, lights somewhere else, the banners yet another. Josh and Sonja made decorative and artistic birthday cards. Mark’s big present was fixing BOTH toilets in our apartment. He was a little disappointed that I did not show more excitement when his gift was unveiled, because apparently it took several more trips with Nur and many hours to accomplish. I was appreciative, but chocolate and good wine from Janis and Stephan provided more immediate gratification. I think the initial pounds that I lost have been reestablished over the last couple of days of cake and left over injera, tibes, and shiro.
Yesterday was a ...
Where shall I begin? I’ll just start chronologically.
At Monday’s morning report I learned that a newborn baby whom I observed being born by cesarean section had died about 18 hours after delivery. The cesarean section was done at 35w6d for placenta previa. The patient had presented with bleeding, the bleeding resolved, but the baby had intermittent episodes of fetal tachycardia. Given the concern for recurrent bleeding and the fetal tachycardia, the decision had been made to proceed with cesarean section. The cesarean section went well, and the baby was delivered screaming, with Apgars of 8 and 9. He was large, almost 4kg, and he looked full term. He was admitted to the neonatal ward for hypoglycemia. From the verbal report it sounds as if he was discovered “expired” while one of the pediatric residents was making routine rounds. There was no autopsy and the patient did not have a detailed fetal ultrasound during her pregnancy, so we have no idea if there was a cardiac defect or other malformation which contributed to the baby’s demise. Routine diabetes screening is not practiced here. A risk based approach is used to screen for diabetes. The patient had 8 other children, one of them had just graduated from nursing school and was at her bedside during her hospitalization. This was the patient’s first delivery in a hospital. I can’t help but think that this baby would have survived back home. Of course I don’t know that, but it is hard to comprehend a screaming and healthy appearing baby at delivery dying within a few hours.
Again, I am impressed with the resident physicians’ ability to persevere. They continue trying to help women and children despite these emotionally deflating cases.
People who survive here are strong. They are just physically, mentally, and emotionally strong.
This week was a good week ...
Today was our first “normal” day. The kids went to school and I went to the hospital. Josh and Sonja already knew which classroom they were in, and we didn’t need to wait to be told to wait some more. I am beginning to note a behavior that has repeated itself several times. I am calling it, “Please sit down and wait.” It sounds nice, as if someone is going to take care of us, but sometimes doesn’t. For instance, yesterday I brought the kids to school, but I did not know which classroom they were assigned. So, I asked a teacher where 2nd and 6th grade children were supposed to go. He asked ..
We have been in Gondar 5 days now. Honestly, the first day here, I cried. I wondered what we were doing thinking we could live in a developing country for a school year. We are fortunate to be experiencing this as a family, as the necessary hugs to persevere are readily available. It has been interesting to me that the family seems to decompensate in a serial fashion. The other three support the decompensated one until they can function again, and then life is okay for a time, until someone else crumbles. So far all four of us have gone through some difficult emotional times. Food and sleep definitely help. Everyone has slept through the night for two nights now, and the emotional break downs are more sporadic.
I have had a difficult time getting used to so many people asking for money, touching me, shaking my hand and yelling “hello!!!” from across the street. Josh seems to have handled this the best, returning the “hellos” and handshakes. But today even he said that it is exhausting. “I’m just another human being, can’t they see that?” He also reflected that in the U.S., “it’s just not right to surround people, and if you do get surrounded, it’s dangerous.” We recognize that it is not dangerous here. But we are a spectacle, especially the kids. I think people are used to seeing white adult tourists, NGO workers, and some hospital or university faculty, but white children with red and blond hair? Last night ...
Issaquah, WA 98029
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