Most women know that visiting your doctor yearly is crucial for early detection of female-related illnesses.    The typical annual exam for a woman includes a PAP smear, breast exam, and pelvic exam.  In addition, the doctor will also assess your heart, blood pressure, and general health.

The annual visit is helpful in identifying cancerous changes on the cervix.  The PAP smear, a sample of cells taken from a woman’s cervix,  is the standard method for detecting changes to the cervix associated with cervical disease and cancer.  Often the PAP test is coupled with a DNA test for the Human Papiloma Virus which is known to cause cervical cancer.  Both tests together are the best way to detect cervical disease and are 99% sure to detect changes in cervical health.

Women over the age of 21 or are sexually active or should have yearly annual health exams.  The PAP test should be done every 1-3 years depending on sexual history and health history.   Women over the age of 30 require both the PAP and DNA test for best screening measures.  Again, testing for women over thirty should be done every 1-3 years depending on past medical history.

A breast and pelvic exam complete the steps for changes in the reproductive organs. Don’t delay, get up to date today to maintain good health!