Well Woman Care typically includes an annual exam for both preventative care and early identification of health issues. This exam is an important part of your healthcare routine and should be done every 12 months, regardless whether you are due for a pap smear. It includes a review of your health history including your gynecological history, an opportunity to discuss current issues, update family history and review/refill current medications. It generally includes a clinical breast exam and pelvic exam. We will also discuss necessary screening tests based on your age; for example, a mammogram, colonoscopy, etc.
How often do I need a pap smear?
The American Cancer Society recommends that women follow these guidelines to help detect cervical cancer early. Following these guidelines can also find pre-cancers, which can be treated to keep cervical cancer from forming.
- All women should begin cervical cancer testing (screening) at age 21. For women age 21 to 29, routine pap smears will occur every three years.
- Beginning at age 30, routine screenings will occur every five years and will continue until age 65, provided no abnormal results occur.
- Women over 65 years of age with a normal pap history may stop cervical cancer screening as long as they haven’t had any serious pre-cancers.
- Women who have had a total hysterectomy (removal of the uterus and cervix) will stop pap smears, unless the hysterectomy was done as a treatment for cervical pre-cancer (or cancer). Women who have had a hysterectomy without removal of the cervix (called a supra-cervical hysterectomy) should continue cervical cancer screening according to the guidelines above.
- You can always request a pap smear but please be advised that insurance may not cover it. If you think you would like one and you’re not “due” please check with your insurance prior to your visit.
It’s so important to create healthy habits from an early age. Here at OBGYN Care we work very hard to make that transition from pediatrician to gynecologist, as easy as possible. As girls grow into teens, it's important that they receive appropriate medical care. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) recommends that young women have their first visit with an obstetrician-gynecologist (OB/GYN) between the ages of 13 and 15. Often that first exam won’t include a pelvic exam (if not sexually active), but rather a regular health exam and discussion about her development and menstrual cycle concerns.
We’ve found it’s a great way to develop a relationship with her provider so she is comfortable sharing personal information in the future.
While all teenage girls should see a gynecologist, it is especially important if your daughter has been sexually active (or is planning to be) or has problems with her period.
We offer wellness blood tests as a part of every annual exam. These are best drawn after fasting for 10-12 hours, (nothing by mouth but water, including no gum or candy. It is ok to take daily medication.) They include:
CBC - complete blood count – used to evaluate your overall health and detect a wide range of disorders, including anemia, infection and leukemia.
CMP - comprehensive metabolic profile – used to measure your sugar (glucose) level, electrolyte and fluid balance, kidney function, and liver function.
TSH - thyroid-stimulating hormone - used to check for thyroid gland problems (hypo or hyper thyroidism.)
Lipid Panel - used to measure your lipids levels-fats and fatty substances used as a source of energy by your body. Lipids include cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and low-density lipoprotein (LDL).
Vitamin D Level - commonly known as the “sunshine vitamin,” your vitamin D level has a variety of impacts on your health (including energy level and cancer prevention.)