2023 Top Doctor: Ann Langer, M.D.

Editorial StaffMarch 1, 2023
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Photography by Steve Craft
Photography by Steve Craft

Obstetrics & Gynecology

Med School/Year Graduated: Creighton University, 1997

Years in Practice: 22 

One recent trend we’ve noticed in your field are OB/GYNs who choose to focus solely on the “gyn.” What are the pluses and minuses of phasing out obstetrics?

It is understandable, because although both sides of our specialty focus solely on women, in many ways obstetrics and gynecology are as different as night and day. And I mean that literally. We have [patients] that need care during the day at the office or in the OR, but [at night] we also have babies who decide it’s time to arrive! Over time, burning the candle at both ends plus trying to have a life becomes difficult. I personally love both… but maybe this new generation has the right idea in choosing one or the other to allow more focus without the fatigue that can plague our specialty.

For a few years, it seemed like endometriosis was on the rise. Were there indeed more instances of it, or better diagnostic tools? What are you seeing in your practice today?

I don’t think that there are any statistics out there to indicate that it is on the rise, but certainly our understanding of it has improved, which may mean we are addressing it more thoroughly with patients? In addition, multiple new and quite effective medications have come onto the market that also have less side effects than prior regimens.  

Does your own experience as a mother inform your work as an obstetrician? 

Being a mom changes your perspective on everything, right? So yes, even though I had probably delivered more than a thousand babies prior to having one of my own, becoming a mom myself helped me to better understand what women are really dealing with and help them in a more practical and empathetic manner before, during and after pregnancy.  

You have a psychology degree. Do you find that useful in your approach to patients? 

Honestly, I think I say this once a week, but yes, I probably use it more than my medical degree! Women are so complex and dynamic, so their lives can be, too. As young women, our patients can have… stressful fertility concerns. If they start families, the rigors of pregnancy and postpartum can lead to depression and anxiety. Over the years, the time and energy needed to raise kids well can take a toll on a marriage. And as we age, menopause robs us of our sleep with hot flashes! So again, in almost every corner of my day, my psychology degree is a huge asset.

You enjoy reading and cooking. Best book you’ve read lately? Go-to dish?

I picked up a Colleen Hoover book called Verity at the airport a month ago, and I was literally unable to put it down. I now have three more waiting for me for when I have time for a book again! Currently, I’ve been trying all sorts of dishes with ground chicken, but my kids are obsessed with a Buffalo ground chicken burger that is topped with homemade ranch and shaved celery, so I have been making a lot of those.

“If I wasn’t a doctor, I’d be…

A large animal vet specializing in racehorses. In Kentucky.