Gynecological exams are recommended for females age 21 and older. The exam allows a healthcare provider to assess normal development of reproductive organs and screen for certain health problems. Exams are also an opportunity to talk to a clinical about sexual health and reproductive concerns.
Please contact Student Health Service (SHS) to make an appointment. Note that gynecological exams are typically scheduled three to four weeks in advance.
Pap Smear Screening Guidelines
SHS follows the national Pap smear screening guidelines as outlined in 2008 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. The national recommendations are:
- Birth control prescriptions do not require a Pap smear, however, a yearly in-office consultation is needed.
- Females should have their first cervical cancer screening (Pap smear) at age 21.
- Females ages 21–29 will be screened every three years if they had not have a previously abnormal Pap smear result.
Preparation for Gynecology Appointments
To prevent interference with the interpretation of the Pap results, do not put anything in your vagina 48 hours prior to your appointment. This includes douches, vaginal creams, intercourse, or tampons. Typically, a Pap smear will not be performed if you are bleeding or spotting. If you are menstruating, please reschedule your appointment.
If Pap results are abnormal, the patient is contacted as soon as possible and may be asked to make an appointment to review the results. It is essential that patients provide SHS with a current address and phone number to ensure prompt communication.