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Annual Breast & Pelvic Exams

Annual gynecologic wellness exams are among the most important ways for a woman to receive preventive health screening and education specifically for women.
Well woman exam breast and pelvic exams dothan alabama


An annual gynecologic or wellness exam is a routine checkup to ensure that you’re healthy inside and out and proactively look for unhealthy conditions.  An annual exam is one of the most beneficial things you can do for yourself because it can help detect certain health problems as well as prevent future ones from developing. Annual exams build a foundation of health and wellness for all the stages of your life.

Do I need an annual exam?

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends:

  • A woman’s first reproductive health visit should take place between ages 13 and 15 (this first visit is often simply a discussion between patient and doctor)
  • Annual breast and pelvic exams should begin at age 19
  • Pap tests should begin at age 21

The annual gynecological exam is a yearly preventative and diagnostic examination that serves to maintain your wellness and to monitor any ongoing physical or hormonal conditions.

The purpose of your routine annual gynecology exam is to allow a health care provider to check your female organs to ensure and maintain good gynecological health. Your annual exam also provides an opportunity for your doctor to give guidance about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and discuss options for minimizing health risks. The examination includes a routine breast and pelvic exam, and may include a screening for certain conditions.

What to expect at your annual exam?

The physical portion of the exam takes about 10 minutes and there is a time before and after the exam to ask and answer any questions you and your health care provider might have.

Pelvic Exam

The pelvic exam in your gynecological exam is comprised of four main steps: the external genital exam, the speculum exam, the Pap Smear test and the bimanual exam. Pelvic exams are a standard procedure that’s recommended as soon as a woman becomes sexually active. Your physician will check for ovarian cysts, sexually transmitted infections, or certain cancers. The procedure is quick, painless and vital to your health.

Breast Exam

During your annual exam, a breast exam will also be performed. Breast exams are very important in order to detect breast cancer early. The breast exam is brief and painless. Your health care provider will manually palpate your breast using a circular motion to feel for lumps, thickening, or discharge. They will also teach you how to give yourself a personal breast exam.

Additional Resources

Learn more from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists