The gynecological examination: what is it for, how it takes place before and during pregnancy

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The gynecological examination

It is not one of those appointments that we write down in our diary with great euphoria, let's face it: we would gladly prefer to do something else at the periodic check-up by the gynecologist. Yet the gynecological examination assumes a fundamental role for the well-being of women and it is no coincidence that it is one of the tests that accompany the female population for many years over the course of their life.

How it takes place and why it is an important one moment of prevention and evaluation of the state of health he explains it to us , head of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Humanitas San Pio X in our city.

In this article

  • What is the gynecological examination for?
  • How does the gynecological examination take place?
  • What are the indications for which it is carried out based on age?
  • How often is it carried out and what checks are required during the gynecological examination?
  • If you want to search for a pregnancy, what tests and visits do you have to do?
  • How many gynecological examinations need to be done during pregnancy? 
  • And in the post pregnancy?

What is the gynecological examination for?

"The gynecological examination is an important moment as it serves a inspect the woman's external and internal genitals - explains -. In particular, the first time of the visit is the inspection by physical examination: the gynecologist is thus able to verify that the external genitalia are morpho-conformed, regular. With the vaginal exploration it is possible to observe the health of the vaginal canal and therefore monitor both the cervix and the uterine body. This step allows to highlight the regularity of the morphology and the dimensions of the apparatus, or to detect any anomalies. Furthermore, with the gynecological examination, it is also possible to appreciate the adnexal regions, tuba and ovary, through four survey parameters: size, mobility, consistency and tenderness ".

Read also: Pregnancy, all the visits to be made

How does the gynecological examination take place?

"This visit should be done both in childbearing age and in postmenopausal age at least once a year - he adds -. In general health situations, the first gynecological visit it can be carried out following the first sexual intercourse, where vaginal exploration is included by examination. As for theinspection, ie the observation of the external genitalia, this is possible even if the patient has not had intercourse. If, on the other hand, it is necessary to visit a virgo patient (that is, she has never had sexual intercourse), a rectal examination is considered. The gynecological examination should always be associated with the execution of one transvaginal ultrasound because all the suspicions of any alterations that a visit may originate can be investigated at the same time by means of an "ultrasound office". However, it may happen that in some clinics this is not possible and therefore the visit is not completed by the ultrasound investigation ".

"It would also be good practice to associate a visit with a breast control where it is possible to perform breast palpation. Here, too, the evaluation can be accompanied by the prescription of ultrasound or mammographic tests ". 


Read also: How to protect yourself from ovarian cancer

What are the indications for which a gynecological examination is required based on age?

"Considering the different stages of life we ​​can distinguish the opportunity of the gynecological examination:

  • in premenopausal age: The need to book a visit is generally due to vaginal infections, vaginitis or menstrual cycle disorders. In childbearing age, a gynecological examination is also used for suspected endometriosis or pelvic pain. 

  • in post menopause the most frequent reasons for visiting are due to atypical blood loss or sensations of weight such as prolapse.

More generally, any situation that makes the woman feel disharmony or doubtful about her symptoms or her state of health of the internal and external genital organs can be decisive for booking a medical consultation ".

Read also: The visits to be made during pregnancy, biometric ultrasound and swab

How often is the gynecological examination carried out and what checks are required?

"The routine of the gynecological examination like form of prevention you should run once a year - clarifies the doctor -. This is associated with the execution of the pap smear: when the result is negative, the guidelines indicate that this screening test can be repeated even after a period of one and a half, two years ".

"It happens that we may request blood tests in the premenopausal age, in particular hormone dosages or relief of tumor markers for suspected ovarian lesion or ovarian cyst. Second level instrumental examinations such as tac o resonance they can be requested by the specialist not only for suspicion of neoplastic pathologies, but also for benign pathologies to investigate, for example, the presence of particular volume fibroids or to deepen a diagnosis of endometriosis. These requests do not have to worry the patients as it is not necessarily a question of going to evaluate malignant pathologies ".

Read also: Menopause: Body Symptoms and Signs Regarding Pregnancy

If you want to search for a pregnancy, what tests and visits do you have to do?

"Many women prefer to contact their gynecologist before trying to become pregnant - comments the expert -. During this visit it is assessed that the uterus and ovaries do not have pathologies. Generally a procedure is performed. pap smear to exclude any pathology affecting the genital system, so as to give a positive opinion to start a pregnancy ".

Read also: Preconception examinations: what they are

Gynecological examinations during pregnancy

"Generally, the patient is required to undergo one obstetric gynecological visit once a month that allows to detect the correct uterine development, and therefore of the fetus, and the continence of the uterine neck, cervical continence, the consistency of the uterine wall. On this occasion it is ensured that the uterus is soft and relaxed and that there are no contractions. Again, the visit should be combined with an obstetric ultrasound to check the fetal heartbeat.

In addition to visits, it should be remembered that there are fundamental ultrasound scans during gestation:

  1. that of the first quarter,
  2. the morphological
  3. and that of growth.

Together with the monthly visit, the pregnant woman regularly carries out tests and blood pressure and body weight are assessed. There glycemic curvefinally, it is done through blood tests around the 25th week ".

Post pregnancy gynecological visits

"Routinely it is done only one post partum checkup one month after delivery - concludes the doctor of Humanitas San Pio X - where the gynecologist checks

  • involution of the uterus,
  • the results of any episiotomy (the cut that is made by the midwife to facilitate birth),
  • and from the eventual episiorrafia, the next seam.

Finally, in the event of a caesarean section, the outcome of the caesarean section wound is monitored. No further checks are generally necessary. "

The interviewee

is responsible for Obstetrics and Gynecology of Humanitas San Pio X in our city.

  • visit gynecologist
  • first pregnancy gynecologist visit
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