Annual wellness exams, along with preventative screenings, may help reduce your risk of developing specific cancers or other diseases that commonly affect women. Skilled clinicians at The Family Practice in Colorado Springs, Colorado, provides quality preventative care to women of all ages, such as pap smears, physical exams, or cardiovascular health maintenance. To schedule your well-woman exam, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Well Woman Care Q & A
What is a well-woman exam?
A woman’s annual physical exam includes a Pap smear, pelvic exam, and breast exam. These specific exams are crucial to a woman’s health and can make a significant difference in the early detection of breast or cervical cancer.
The pap smear screens for cervical cancer. During the pelvic exam, the clinician feels for abnormalities of your uterus, vagina, cervix, and ovaries. An annual breast exam is an effective tool in feeling and spotting abnormal lumps which can be problematic if not resolved.
What is a Pap smear?
A Pap smear screens for cervical cancer. During the procedure, the clinician gently scrapes away cells from your cervix and sends them to a lab for examination.
It’s recommended women get a Pap smear every three years starting at age 21. However, if you’re over 30, then it’s possible to have a pap smear every five years in combination with your HPV test.
Depending on your classification level, the clinician may increase the frequency at which you receive Pap smears or collect a tissue sample for further analysis. Because Pap smear results are extremely accurate, having regular screenings can reduce mortality by 80%.
What I should know about women’s cardiovascular health?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is responsible for 29% of deaths. It’s crucial to understand the risk factors unique to women when it comes to heart disease, including:
- Elevated risk after menopause
- Gestational hypertension
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome
The unique risk factors stated above can increase the blood levels of circulating triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein, known as the bad cholesterol. In addition, other factors such as obesity, smoking, and not exercising can elevate your chances of having an unhealthy cardiovascular system.
While diseases can be scary, taking preventative measures such as having consistent annual physical exams can help detect any diseases earlier and avoid further complications.
If you’re concerned about your reproductive health or simply have any questions, call The Family Practice today or book your appointment online.