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Well Woman Exam Specialist

Atlantic OB/GYN Associates, PC

Board Certified OBGYN & Primary Care located in Brick, NJ

A woman’s health is governed to a surprising degree by her reproductive health, which is why women need specialized medical oversight. Vanita Patel, MD, at Atlantic OB/GYN Associates, PC recognizes this, which is why they offer well woman exams to patients in Brick, New Jersey. These preventive visits help women navigate every stage of their lives, giving them the tools they need for optimal health. To schedule your well woman exam today, call or use the online booking tool.

Well Woman Exam Q&A

Why would I need a well woman exam?

Thanks to a woman’s reproductive system, her health care concerns are unique to her gender and include:

  • Reproductive cancers, including breast and cervical cancer
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • Urinary tract and vaginal infections
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Hormonal issues, including menopause

This list is by no means comprehensive, but it gives an idea of the types of issues that face women’s health. And a well woman exam is designed to oversee these areas of your health, screening you for potential problems and allowing Dr. Patel to intervene quickly should an issue arise.

To give you an idea of the effectiveness of a well woman exam, up until 15-20 years ago, cervical cancer was one of the leading causes of cancer death in women. Thanks to the simple Pap smear, today there are only 12,000-14,000 new diagnoses each year.

And this same principle applies to breast cancer, which strikes 1 in 8 women in the United States. Through early detection, your chances of beating the disease rise exponentially.

What happens during a well woman exam?

Dr. Patel tailors each exam to your unique needs and goals, but, in general, you should expect:

  • A pelvic exam
  • A breast exam
  • A Pap smear
  • A blood and urine test
  • Testing for sexually transmitted infections, if necessary

In addition to these tests, screenings, and exams, your provider spends some time with you, reviewing any concerns you may have and providing counsel where needed. For example, Dr. Patel at Atlantic OB/GYN Associates, PC provides birth control education and provision if you want to prevent an unplanned pregnancy.

What can I expect during a Pap smear?

Dr. Patel performs a Pap smear during your well woman exam to identify cell changes in the cervix that may indicate a risk for or the presence of cervical cancer. After a manual evaluation of your reproductive organs, she uses a long cotton swab or brush to collect cervical cell samples. These samples go to a medical lab for further evaluation to confirm or rule out cervical cancer.

To ensure the most accurate results, Dr. Patel will ask you to avoid tampon use and sex for a day or two leading up to your test.

Following a Pap smear, you may feel some discomfort, and it’s normal to have spotting or mild vaginal discharge after your test.

How often should I have a well woman exam?

If you’re healthy, you should have a well woman exam once a year. But if you have any specific issues, such as abnormal Pap test results or an infection, Dr. Patel at Atlantic OB/GYN Associates, PC may want to see you more frequently to monitor your health more closely. 

The bottom line is that, as preventive tools go, a well woman exam is one of the best investments you can make in your overall health and wellness.

To set up your well woman exam today, call Atlantic OB/GYN Associates, PC or use the online scheduling tool to set up an appointment.