Well Woman Exam
Every woman should schedule an exam with her gynecologist every year. We call this an “annual well woman exam.”
Why a well woman exam with Dr. De Leon
Well woman exams are the first line of defense against diseases of the female reproductive system. Many women avoid the annual exam because they want to avoid the pelvic exam. We understand this concern, but we emphasize to all of our patients that the annual exam can save their lives.
Perhaps most important, the annual well woman exam can detect early stages of cervical cancer. When treatment begins early (in stage 1a) the 5-year survival rate for cervical cancer is 93% (1). The only way to detect cervical cancer at this early stage is with pelvic exam that is part of your annual well woman exam.
What is included in a well woman exam?
A physical exam
A breast exam: Dr. De Leon will look for lumps or irregularities in your breasts and show you how to perform a breast self examination. This exam is important to detect early signs of breast cancer.
A pelvic exam: Dr. De Leon will examine your reproductive organs to determine the size and position of your ovaries, uterus, cervix, and vagina. This exam helps detect early stage cancer, causes of inflammation, sexually transmitted diseases, and other problems particular to the female reproductive system.
A pap smear test: The pap smear is performed every year for all women age 21 and above, and all women who have been sexually active for 3 years or more. During the pelvic exam, we will swab the cervix and send these cervical cells to the lab to check for pre-cancerous growth. The pap smear can save your life.
Your doctor needs to know all of your healthcare concerns to best care for you, and an annual exam is the ideal time to share issues, problems or concerns. If you haven’t had an annual well woman exam in the last year, please call us today at (214) 879-3505.
(1) Numbers from the National Cancer Database, Provided by the American Cancer Society.