Well Woman Care
In addition to seeing a gynecologist when you have a problem, it also is important to schedule routine well woman gynecology appointments. Regular gynecology checkups, examinations and immunizations can help you live healthier by preventing problems before they start and by giving you the knowledge to recognize risk factors.
What to Expect
During a well woman visit, several screening tests and exams may be performed, depending on your age, history and overall health. A Pap test, along with a pelvic exam, is an important part of a woman's routine health care because it may detect abnormalities that can lead to invasive cancer. A Pap test (sometimes called a Pap smear) is a way to examine cells collected from the cervix, or the "mouth" of the womb (located at the top of the vagina), for the presence of:
- Abnormal cells
Most invasive cancers of the cervix can be detected early if women have Pap tests and pelvic examinations regularly. As with many types of cancer, cancer of the cervix
is more likely to be successfully treated if it is detected early.
A breast exam also may be performed to look for any changes in the breast and underarm area. Your Women's Health gynecologist also can instruct you in how to conduct a breast self-examination, which should be performed every month.