Los Angeles-based OBGYN combines her love of teaching, medicine and women’s health to provide compassionate care for women of all ages.
Carolyne Parks, MD, always knew she wanted to be a doctor. She just wasn’t sure what specialty to choose. Many experiences and a deliberate detour characterized her journey to becoming an obstetrician-gynecologist into another passion: teaching.
Dr. Parks volunteered at local hospitals throughout high school and college, which nurtured her enthusiasm for providing compassionate patient care. She also interacted with enough new and seasoned physicians who told her they wished they had taken time off before heading straight into medical school. She took their advice and indulged her passion for teaching by becoming a teacher. For the next six years, Dr. Parks worked in private schools teaching everything from 5th-grade science to advanced placement biology.
“I actually taught longer than I planned to because I loved it so much!” she says. The lure of a medical career eventually won out.
Dr. Parks thought she might go into pediatrics when she entered medical school because of her love of children. Then came a life-changing moment during an obstetrical rotation: delivering her first baby.
“That was the most special moment in my life, to present a new infant to the mom,” she says. “I still feel that sense of awe and honor every single time I deliver a baby.”Dr. Carolyn Parks, OBGYN
In September 2021, Dr. Parks joined Santa Monica Women’s Health after four years of practicing in East Los Angeles. The group consists of 10 female physicians with offices in Santa Monica and Playa Vista.
“I loved this community and Saint John’s Health Center,” Dr. Parks says of her current practice home. “I completed some residency rotations with a GYN oncologist here, and he introduced me to the group. I was impressed by how all the patient care interactions were so positive. Every woman was so well taken care of, and I wanted to be part of that.”
“I try to help patients advocate for themselves,” Dr. Parks says of her philosophy of care. “I listen to them and take all their thoughts into consideration so that we become a team in their care.” And, of course, she’s still a teacher, instructing her patients on how to maximize their health.
Today, Dr. Parks has been practicing for five years and is passionate about delivering exceptional healthcare to women of all ages. Her clinical interests include pregnancy and prenatal care, preventive medicine and minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. She received the Outstanding Minimally Invasive Surgery Resident award from the Society of Laparoscopic and Robotic Surgeons.
“I look forward to expanding my practice and welcoming new patients to my new practice home,” she notes.
In her spare time, Dr. Parks enjoys spending time with her husband and 2-year-old daughter, hiking, biking and otherwise enjoying California’s many outdoors pursuits.
A version of this article appeared in an issue of the Palisades Neighbor.
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