Women’s Health Services Q & A

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    What do women’s health services include?

    Women’s health services include all the exams, evaluations, testing and other services to help women stay as healthy as possible at every stage of life, from puberty all the way through menopause. In addition to regular physical exams and lab work, women’s health services include clinical breast exams, Pap tests and HPV screening, as well as additional testing and evaluation and referral to specialists when needed.

    What happens during a women’s health exam?

    The exam process begins with a detailed personal and family medical history to identify potential risk factors that could increase your likelihood to develop specific diseases or health issues. During the exam itself, a routine physical will be performed including measurements of weight and blood pressure and a clinical breast exam. At some visits, a Pap test or HPV test may also be performed, and lab work like urinalysis or blood testing may be ordered. You’ll also have time to discuss your health concerns and to receive guidance custom-tailored for your personal health needs.

    What medical tests should I have as I get older?

    To a large degree, the tests you’ll need will be based on your personal and family medical history and other potential risk factors, like age. In addition, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services offers the following recommendations for screenings to help you stay as healthy as possible:

    • blood pressure tests performed one or more times per year
    • routine cholesterol testing beginning at age 20
    • blood sugar testing to check for early signs of diabetes
    • Pap tests every three or five years, depending on your age
    • mammograms and colorectal cancer screening beginning at age 50
    • bone mineral density testing for women 65 years old or older

    You can discuss these and other tests as well as how often you should be tested during your office visit.