All women should see an obstetrics/gynecology (OB-GYN) specialist at least once a year. These medical providers have undergone specialized advanced training and are experienced in diagnosing and treating health issues specific to women. The type of OB-GYN services you receive will depend in large part on your age and stage of life – and may cover health concerns about birth control, childbirth, menopause, and more.
Women are also prone to specific problems and diseases affecting their reproductive organs. This includes gynecological cancer, infections, and common women’s health disorders such as:
- Endometriosis – uterine tissue that grows outside the uterus, causing pain and menstrual irregularities
- Fibroids – abnormal but benign growths in the uterus that can cause pelvic pain and menstrual irregularities
- Pelvic Organ Prolapse – when pelvic floor muscles are too weak to support the organs within the pelvis, which can cause the bladder, uterus, or other organs to fall into or out of the vagina
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) – a hormone disorder that causes enlarged ovaries, menstrual irregularities, acne, and excess hair growth
Your Consolidated Medical Practices of Memphis (CMPM) obstetrics/gynecology provider can identify and address these women’s healthcare issues and more in a comfortable, safe, and private setting.
If you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, your first doctor visit should be to an obstetrician. These physicians focus on providing the healthcare you and your baby need before, during, and after your pregnancy.
The obstetrics care your CMPM provider offers includes:
- Family planning
- Fertility treatment
- Prenatal care
- Labor and delivery
- Postpartum care
What to Expect
Every pregnancy is different. It’s important to set yourself up for a well-informed and positive childbirth experience – beginning with your first appointment with your CMPM obstetrician within a month or two after a missed period, or as soon as you discover you are pregnant.
At your first appointment, your doctor will want to confirm your pregnancy and estimated due date, along with addressing any concerns or issues you may have. A prenatal ultrasound may sometimes be performed at this visit, or it may be done at a later time when it is very early in the pregnancy. In addition, your obstetrician will perform a physical exam, including a pelvic exam if you haven’t had one recently.
Your provider can also provide information about prenatal screenings you may be interested in. For example, blood tests and DNA screenings can identify whether your baby is at risk of certain types of birth defects.
Gynecological services our CMPM providers offer may include:
- Breast exam
- HPV vaccine and testing
- Mammogram orders
- Menopause symptom relief
- Menstrual disorders, diagnosis & treatment
- PAP smears (cervical cancer screening)
- Pelvic exams
- Sexually transmitted disease (STD) testing and treatment
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs) testing and treatment
- Well-woman annual exams
What to Expect
Your annual well-woman exam with an OB-GYN will typically include:
- Breast exam. This is a physical examination of your breasts, to check for any lumps and other abnormalities. You should feel free to ask any questions you have for your OB-GYN provider, including what to look for and how to do a breast self-exam at home. If you are 40 or older, or have risk factors for breast cancer, a mammogram (X-ray of the breasts) will be ordered for you.
- Pap smear. This is done during a pelvic exam and involves taking a swab of cells from your cervix, which is tested in a lab for potentially precancerous or cancerous growths. For most women of reproductive age, a Pap smear is recommended every three years; if you have risk factors for cervical cancer, such as an HPV infection, your OB-GYN may recommend undergoing Pap smears more often.
- Pelvic exam. This may include a Pap smear or may be done on its own, depending on the screening frequency recommended for you. The purpose of the pelvic exam is to visually and palpably feel for any abnormalities in the reproductive organs, including the vulva, vagina, cervix, uterus, and rectum.
If you are concerned about sexually transmitted diseases, your OB-GYN can order STD tests, either with swabs taken during the pelvic exam or with specific blood tests. Your annual visit is also the ideal time to talk to your provider about any woman’s health concerns you may have.
For comprehensive women’s healthcare delivered with compassion by expert obstetricians and gynecologists, call your Consolidated Medical Practices of Memphis OB-GYN provider’s office for more information or to schedule a doctor’s visit. You can find their phone number by clicking their name above or by visiting our Make an Appointment page.