- Gynecological exam
For routine gynecological exams, it is best to make appointments mid-cycle, or 2 weeks following menses to give best Pap results. Avoid douching, sex, or vaginal creams for at least 48 hours before the exam. For the initial exam, arrive 20 minutes before appointment time to complete questionnaires and other paperwork. Do not procrastinate; do not be afraid. The pelvic exam is not painful, and staff is very sensitive to your feelings. Pap smears are routinely done beginning at age 21 years, and thereafter every 3 years if normal. Gonorrhea and chlamydia screening and HIV testing are offered annually. Be prepared for blood tests by fasting for 12 hours before the exam, and schedule blood work at the same visit, if you wish. Make an appointment.