A gynecological examination is a complete physical exam of a woman’s pelvic organs by a health professional. This exam helps the health professional to evaluate the size and position of the vagina, cervix, uterus, and ovaries. A pelvic exam may be done to help detect certain cancers in their early stages, infections, sexually transmitted infections, or other reproductive system problems.
Why It Is Done
A pelvic exam may be done:
- As part of a woman’s regular physical checkup. A Pap test may be done during the pelvic exam.
- To detect vaginal infections, such as yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis.
- To help detect sexually transmitted infections, such as chlamydia, herpes, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, or human papillomavirus.
- To help determine the cause of abnormal uterine bleeding.
- To evaluate pelvic organ abnormalities, such as uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, or uterine prolapse.
- To evaluate abdominal or pelvic pain.
- Before prescribing a method of birth control (contraception). Some methods of birth control, such as an intrauterine device, require a pelvic exam to make sure the device fits properly.
What To Think About
- If you may have a sexually transmitted infection (STI), other testing may be needed to confirm a diagnosis.
- Chlamydia Tests
- Gonorrhea Test
- Herpes Tests
- Syphilis Tests
- Tests for Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
- Vaginal Wet Mount