There are several words you never want to hear from a doctor. For those of the female gender, those words include "women's pelvic exam". Pelvic exams are never fun, usually not comfortable, and are generally unexpected, no matter how long it has been since the last. A pelvic exam is when a medical doctor examines the internal and external reproductive organs, usually while a woman is awake. They should be relatively pain-free; however, depending on your circumstances, you may feel discomfort. There are many reasons why a pelvic exam may be warranted, including but not limited to:
Monthly bleeding is a regular occurrence for most women. That being said, changes in how your menstrual period presents itself should be noted. Excessive bleeding or the absence of your period should be discussed with a doctor. Some women may even begin to experience during sexual intercourse or pregnancy. Outside of the normal menstrual bleeding, blood is often a sign that something is wrong. In cases of vaginal hemorrhage, patients should go to the emergency room.
Monthly cramping is a normal part of menstruation. However, pain that leaves a woman unable to function is not normal. Pelvic pain during intercourse, while not menstruating, or sporadically is not normal. Patients experiencing abnormal pain may have ovarian cysts or endometriosis and should see their doctor.
There are many vaginal secretions that are normal and healthy. However, vaginal discharge is when these secretions have an odor or strange hue. For example, women with a yeast infection may have an increased volume of discharge, usually with a slight smell. In order to diagnose the cause of vaginal discharge, most doctors will perform a pelvic exam, sometimes even submitting a sample extracted with a cotton swab.
Women should get a pelvic exam whenever they notice changes in the anatomy of their pelvic area. For example, if intercourse has become painful, it is possible that they have developed a nabothian cyst, which presents itself in the vagina. Without a pelvic exam, a woman may never know what has potentially caused her love life problems.
In conclusion, there are many different reasons why someone may need a women's pelvic exam. They may not be the most pleasant experience, but they do allow doctors to shed light on problems that a patient may be experiencing. Instead of shying away from pelvic exams, schedule yours in advance so you can mentally prepare.
To learn more, contact a company like Naples Ob-Gyn.