Early detection is very important to successfully treat any gynecological or reproductive issue that a patient may experience. As we have stated previously, the earlier a woman is aware of her condition, the more treatment options she will likely have available to her. That’s why we stress the importance of annual well woman exams for women of all ages. Today, we’ll be focusing on the pelvic exam, one of the central components of the well woman exam and why it is so essential.
A standard pelvic exam at Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett includes three elements. First we conduct an external examination to monitor the condition of the pelvic anatomy and check for skin lesions or palpations of the stomach area. Next, there is an internal examination to inspect the vagina and cervix with a speculum. We then examine the uterus (including the appendages of the uterus known as the adnexa) with a pelvic, or bimanual, exam. Lastly, we examine the abdomen by palpating the stomach, spleen, liver, and bladder.
We recommend annual pelvic exams to scan for the following female concerns:
- Vaginal infections including yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis
- Sexually transmitted infections including herpes, gonorrhea, or human papillomavirus (HPV)
- Irregular bleeding
- Various gynecological issues including uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, or uterine prolapse
Before your pelvic exam with a board-certified gynecologist, always make your doctor aware of the following factors to consider:
- When your last period started and how long it lasted
- If you have never had a pelvic exam before
- If you are currently on birth control
- If you are pregnant or think you might become pregnant
- If you have had surgery or any other procedures performed on the vagina, cervix, uterus or surrounding areas
- If you are experiencing any symptoms in the pelvic-area like itching, redness, swelling, or an unusual vaginal discharge
- Any changes you may have noticed throughout the year or during regular self-exams
Here at Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett, it’s our top priority to ensure peace of mind to patients during their gynecological examinations. Our entire staff will do everything within their power to ensure that all exams are performed with the utmost level of privacy, discretion and comfort that our patients deserve. To schedule your annual pelvic examination, contact Dr. Kristine Gould at Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett today. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for more tips, news and updates.