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Doctor Office > Doctors A-Z > Gynecologist
What is a
gynecologist? A gynecologist is a doctor who studies and treats diseases of
the female reproductive system.
When to visit
When would you see a
gynecologist? Young women and adolescents should start having gynecologic
examinations when they turn 18 or when they first become sexually active (if
that occurs before the age of 18). The examination may also be necessary before
the age of 18 for concerns like abdominal pain, irregular or painful menstrual
periods, or vaginal discharge.
What to expect
What would you expect during
a visit with a gynecologist? The entire exam takes only a few minutes. The
doctor will often ask a female chaperon to be present to make the patient feel
more comfortable. This person can be a parent or friend or it can be another
person from the doctor’s office, like a nurse. The doctor will perform a pap
smear and test for sexually transmitted diseases. After the Pap smear it’s
normal for the patient to have a small amount of blood spotting over the next
day or so.
How often to visit
How often should you
visit a gynecologist? Once sexually active, most
physicians recommend that women get yearly check-ups.