Reasons why you should see a gynaecologist

A gynaecologist specialises in women’s health, focusing on the reproductive system. From adolescence to late adulthood, many changes occur in a woman’s body. A gynaecologist can play an essential role in maintaining women’s health over time. They can examine and take care of issues regarding pain or missed periods. A gynaecologist can answer questions regarding problems in this area, changes in your body and issues relating to pregnancy and STDs. They can also offer the following services: 

Pelvic exam

A pelvic exam can help find any out-of-the-ordinary growths or other changes that may have come about. Women with abnormal discharge, menstrual disorders or perimenopause should get regular checks.

Changes in vaginal discharge

Discharge that differs from the norm can be an indicator of infection. An internal exam can find the cause. If you dismiss the issue, it can lead to further health problems down the line. 

Urinary issues

If you have pain when you urinate or visible blood, you should definitely seek treatment. It is not necessarily a sign of a big problem, but you will need to get it checked out.  

Sexual discomfort

A gynaecologist can help with the following concerns: 

    • Vaginal dryness: This can be caused by ageing or contraception used over time (lack of oestrogen). A gynaecologist can prescribe vaginal oestrogen for this. 
  • Pain during sex: Painful sex can mean that there is a larger issue to be treated. A gynaecologist can get to the bottom of the problem, whether the issue is physical or psychological. 

Urinary or faecal leakage

A number of women experience urinary or faecal incontinence after childbirth, particularly if they have had a large baby. The symptoms can grow more severe during menopause.

Painful periods

If your period pain is severe, you may need to visit a gynaecologist. It could be a sign of uterine fibroids or endometriosis. 

Experiencing unusual sensations 

Some other common concerns that might lead to you seeing a gynaecologist include itching, burning and irregular discharge.

Conditions treated

Gynaecologists can treat a wide range of conditions, including: 

Fibroids

Fibroids are non-cancerous growths of the uterus of varying sizes consisting of muscle and fibrous tissue. Some women are unaware that they have the growths. Women with fibroids may experience painful or heavy periods, abdominal or lower back pain, a need to pass urine often, constipation and discomfort during intercourse.

Endometriosis

Endometriosis involves tissue growing irregularly in sites such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries. The long-lasting condition can affect women at any point in their life. While it inhibits their quality of life, some treatments can help with it. For some people, the symptoms are severe. They include pelvic pain, intense period pain, pain before or after intercourse, pain while going to the toilet, blood in the urine, feeling sick and constipated, having diarrhoea, or having trouble conceiving. For other people, the symptoms are undetectable. 

Heavy periods (menorrhagia)

You should get help if you’re bothered by the amount of bleeding, your periods becoming heavier, or if you’re also having other symptoms, such as pain or bleeding while you are not on your period. Heavy periods can stem from issues such as fibroids or endometriosis. If in doubt, it is best to have yourself checked out.    

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS affects how a woman’s ovaries work. The three core features of the condition are irregular periods, excess androgen and polycystic ovaries. 

Other conditions treated by gynaecologists

Other conditions treated by gynaecologists include uterine and endometrial polyps; vaginal and uterine prolapse; screening and treatment for cervical, ovarian, uterine and endometrial cancers; sexual health investigations and contraception; and HPV screening and vaccinations. 

Why a gynaecologist may ask you about your sexual history

Men and women can feel uncomfortable discussing their sexual history in front of a gynaecologist. However, some of the most common questions are asked for good reason. A gynaecologist may ask you how old you were when you first had intercourse. Having intercourse prior to turning 18 can sometimes make you more susceptible to HPV infection. A gynaecologist may also ask about past STDs as they can lead to infertility. They can put you through to the relevant counselling service if there is a need for it. 

The final say

Gynaecologist appointments are available on the NHS after GP referral. However, they can also be booked privately. At Expert, highly qualified and experienced gynaecologists perform treatments from state-of-the-art clinics across London. 

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