The pelvic exam is an important tool for preventative health and diagnosis
Our Round Rock obgyns understand that most women dislike having a pelvic exam. Even though it may not be your favorite, it’s an important part of comprehensive obgyn care.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends an annual pelvic exam for all women over the age of 21. Women under age 21 usually do not need this examination unless they have symptoms that suggest pelvic, urologic, rectal or female genital tract problems or a medical history that requires a pelvic exam.
Why do our Round Rock obgyns perform a pelvic exam?
During your annual well woman exam, our Round Rock obgyns usually perform a pelvic exam. During the exam, they are looking for signs that you may have disorders such as uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts or cancer in the early stages.
If you are experiencing symptoms such as abnormal menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, urinary problems or other gynecological issues, the pelvic exam helps us determine the problem, as well as what other tests or treatment we may recommend.
What can I expect during the examination?
The pelvic exam usually consists of three or four parts.
- During the external visual exam, our Round Rock obgyns examine your external genitalia to detect any sores, swelling, redness, irritation or other conditions.
- The speculum or internal visual exam is the portion of the pelvic exam when our physician gently inserts a speculum into your vagina. The speculum separates the inner walls of the vagina, providing the physician with a better view of your cervix and vagina. If you try to relax and breathe normally, the speculum should be less uncomfortable. If you experience pain, let your physician know.
- Pap smears used to be a routine component of every annual pelvic exam, but recently the guidelines have changed. Most women will only require a Pap smear every three to five years.
- The bimanual exam allows our Round Rock obgyns to identify problems with your uterus or ovaries. Your physician will take one hand and very gently insert two gloved fingers into the vagina, while the other hand gently presses on the abdomen and pelvis. This part of the pelvic exam allows the physician to examine the shape and size of the uterus and note any tenderness. We may also conduct a rectal examination by inserting a finger into the rectum. This allows us to find any irregularities, growths or problems.
Our Round Rock obgyns employ the pelvic exam as part of wellness care and obgyn diagnosis
Whether you are looking for compassionate and expert obgyn wellness care or help with gynecological symptoms, contact our physicians for reassurances and proactive care.