Effie Siomos is a strong advocate for women taking steps to care for themselves.
"We need to do nice things for ourselves once in a while," Siomos said. "Make time to meet a friend for lunch. Take a walk, ride a bike, sign up for a mud run. See your doctor."
"I know people don't think of going to the doctor as something nice you can do for yourself, but just do it," said the OB/GYN from Women's Care of Wisconsin. "It will make your day-to-day life better."
With special interests that include pregnancy care, performing in-office procedures and minimally invasive surgeries, and consults with moms and daughters to manage heavy periods or discuss birth control, Siomos has seen-countless times-women who have been dealing with issues for three, five seven years until they finally come in to see her.
In one classic exchange, a patient said she had been dealing with a problem in silence ever since the birth of her baby. Siomos asked how old her baby was.
"He's going into high school," was the reply.
"It's easier to take care of our kids or our parents than it is to take care of ourselves," said Siomos. "Just because your friend doesn't have the issue doesn't mean this is your lot in life. There are so many options to get you back to where you should be."
Siomos loves good conversations with patients and feels that by paying close attention, she can make sure people are getting what they need at her office.
"Whatever the issue, there are physical symptoms that come with it, but there's an emotional component as well, and paying attention to that really helps guide the treatment for what the patient wants or needs and what solution is best for them," Siomos said.
Though a Chicagoland native, Siomos has spent her entire career practicing in rural communities, first in Beaver Dam following her residency, and now in Berlin.
"It's a nice way to practice medicine," said Siomos. "It just feels a little more personal. People look after each other."
Such a perspective, said Siomos, dovetails perfectly with the culture at Women's Care of Wisconsin, the organization she joined in 2019.
"A lot of times when you go to a doctor's office you're not just getting the doctor. You're getting the person at the front desk, you're getting the person who takes your blood pressure and puts you in a room, you're talking to the nurse if you're calling with a question afterwards. There are all these layers to what makes a great experience, and that's where Women's Care of Wisconsin really stands out," said Siomos. "It's our people."
With a family background in healthcare, it wasn't surprising to see Siomos follow the path, as she weighed a university job against a more hands on career in the field. The latter solidified itself upon her first delivery, an experience she described as different from anything else she had experienced in med school.
"It was an amazing chance to be part of someone's life at such a moment," Siomos said. "It's also an extraordinary opportunity to make an impact in ways that might not be typical for healthcare."
Many days find Siomos in her Berlin clinic, spending time with patients discussing their concerns and healthcare goals and learning what's important to them, while other days she's in surgery for planned procedures such as a hysterectomy or the removal of cysts.
It's a job with plenty of variety, which Siomos embraces.
"It's a great way to get to know people, when you can sit down and talk to them about what decisions would be best in their life," she said. "I get to teach and present what treatments are available and provide my patients with a clear understanding of their options," said Siomos.
Gone are the days, she said, of patting someone on the knee and sending them on their way, often with the cursory (and demeaning) advice to just tough it out.
"There are so many different ways women want to interact with their health care," said Siomos. "And we have so many ways to help."
Dr. Effie Siomos sees patients at Women's Care of Wisconsin in Berlin, located at 225 Memorial Drive, Suite 2030. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Siomos, please call or text 920.729.7105.