The Endocrinology Wellness Institute
Diabetes • Thyroid • Pituitary • Osteoporosis
Dr. Vanessa Rodríguez is a Board Certified Adult Endocrinologist with 10+ years of experience in the areas of Diabetes, Metabolism and other endocrine conditions with private practice in Delray Beach, Florida. After earning her medical degree at the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine in San Juan, Dr. Rodríguez completed her internship and residency in internal medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston. She subsequently completed a fellowship in Endocrinology and Metabolism at UTMB and a preceptorship at the International Diabetes Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, through the Endocrine Fellows Foundation.
As a Type 1 diabetes patient since she was 15 years old, Dr. Rodríguez understands firsthand what it is to live a healthy life with diabetes using an insulin pump. She is committed to educate her patients on how they can live and manage successfully their conditions. Dr. Rodríguez is also focused in helping patients with diabetes during their pregnancies and those making a successful transition to an adult endocrinologist.
Dr. Rodríguez is a fellow of the American College of Endocrinology and has a Certification of Neck Ultrasound from the American Association of Clinical Endocrinology. She is also a member of The Endocrine Society, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and the American Diabetes Association.
Dr. Rodríguez and her staff are fluent in both Spanish and English. They’re accepting new patients in their private practice in Delray Beach, FL.
Endocrinologists specialize in treating diseases related to glands and hormones. With over 200 hormones or hormone-like substances circulating around the body, the conditions or diseases related to hormones often affect other parts of the body too. Some hormones are produced by glands and some are produced or managed by other organs with endocrine tissue.
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about the conditions we treat.
Diabetes affects about 12% of the population in the United States. To understand diabetes, we must understand insulin. It is a hormone produced by your pancreas and helps move sugar, or glucose, in your body’s tissues. Cells use glucose as fuel. When the beta cells in your pancreas either do not produce insulin or can’t produce enough insulin or the body can’t use the insulin well enough, people develop diabetes.
There are two main types of diabetes:
• Type 1 – it happens when your pancreas can’t produce any insulin. This type of diabetes is less common.
• Type 2 – it happens when beta cells in your pancreas are still able to produce insulin, but maybe not in enough quantities. This is the most common type of diabetes.
The thyroid gland is a small, butterfly-shaped gland in the front of your neck. Its hormones travel from the thyroid gland through the blood to all parts of the body. Thyroid hormones help all your organs to work well and control how your body uses food for energy. These hormones affect your metabolism rate, which means how slow or fast your brain, heart, muscles, liver and other parts of your body works. If your body works too fast or too slow, you don’t feel well. When the thyroid gland doesn’t make enough thyroid hormone, it’s called hypothyroidism. That’s when some parts of the body work too slowly. When this happens, you feel tired, feel cold even when other people are comfortable or even warm, have a slow heart rate and dry skin, become constipated, and gain weight even though you’re not eating more or exercising less than usual.
Bone is living tissue that is constantly being broken down and repaired. Osteoporosis occurs when the creation of new bone doesn’t keep up with the removal of old bone.
Osteoporosis causes bones to become weak and brittle – so brittle that a fall or even a mild stress like bending over or coughing could cause a fracture. These fractures are most common in the hip, wrist or spine.
Osteoporosis affects men and women of all races, but White and Asian women, especially who are past menopause, as at the highest risk. There are no symptoms in the early stages of bone loss, but after osteoporosis is present you may have symptoms like back pain caused by a fractured vertebrae, loss of height, stooped posture or a bone fracture that occurs much more easily than expected.
Most people reach their peak bone mass by their early 20’s.
Testosterone is a hormone. It’s what puts a hair on a man’s chest and the force behind his sex drive. In summary, it’s what makes a man a man…
During puberty, testosterone helps build a man’s muscles, deepens his voice and boosts the size of his penis and testes. In adulthood, it keeps a man’s muscles and bones strong and maintains his interest in sex. Testosterone is responsible for the normal growth and development of the prostate, but also controls a man’s mood and energy level, bone strength and changes in muscle mass and fat distribution.
Hypogonadism is a condition commonly known also as “male menopause”, referring when males experience a decrease in either testosterone production, sperm production or both.
Most women with diabetes can have a safe pregnancy and delivery if they have tight blood sugar control before becoming pregnant. If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, it is important to get good health care before and throughout your pregnancy. If you have diabetes and want to have a baby, get a check up before becoming pregnant. Ideally your partner should join you and you should see a team of healthcare providers that includes your endocrinologist, a diabetes educator, a dietitian and an obstetrician.
The pituitary gland is a tiny organ, about the size of a pea located at the base of the brain, just behind the bridge of your nose. It is often referred to as the “master gland” because it controls the functions of other glands. This small gland is responsible for making and storing many different hormones. Even though it’s small, the front part of the pituitary is responsible for certain hormones and the back part is responsible for others.
The most frequent type of pituitary disorder is a benign growth, known as tumor or adenoma. These tumors are fairly common in adults. They are not considered a brain tumor and most are not cancerous.
Polycystic ovary syndrome is a common hormonal disorder among girls and women, during their reproductive years. Women with PCOS produce more amounts of male hormones, such as testosterone, than women without the condition.
The characteristics of PCOS might be experiencing irregular menstrual periods, having too much hair on the body and face and having very large number of follicles on the ovaries. These many follicles look like cysts, where the term “polycystic” came from. PCOS seems to be present in obese women and girls and whose family members also have it. Many women with PCOS also have too much insulin in their bodies because the insulin does not work as well as it should.
If you or your child were diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when he or she was young, at some point you’ll reach the point when a transition from a pediatric endocrinologist to an adult endocrinologist needs to happen.
Type 1 Diabetes is a chronic, life-long condition and young adults, and their families as a whole, need to learn how to live with it. When patients are diagnosed at an early age, parents usually are mostly responsible for the diabetes day-to-day care of their child. But as children grow into young adults with Type 1 Diabetes, they need to create healthy, structured diabetes behaviors – committing to self-monitoring, paying attention to their meals, exercising, among others – so they are more likely to stick with these behaviors for years to come.
Menopause is a time of transition and unexpected surprises for many women. The age you experience it varies - typically occurs in your late 40s or early 50s - but smoking or chemotherapy can accelerate ovary decline, resulting in menopause showing its head earlier than anticipated. Perimenopause is the beginning of the transition - when hormone production in the body begins to decline. But when a woman has no menstrual periods for one full year, then she reaches menopause officially.
The symptoms of menopause vary from woman to woman, even those in the same families. Women often experience hot flashes – about 75% of women do, making it the most common symptom. But they also experience weight gain, vaginal dryness, muscle and joint pain, loss of sex drive and even mood swings and depression.
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