A pelvic examination is a complete physical exam of a woman's pelvic
organs camera by a health professional. A pelvic exam helps a health
professional evaluate the size and position of the vagina, cervix, uterus, and
ovaries. It is an important part of preventive health care for all adult women.
A pelvic exam is done to help detect certain cancers in their early stages,
infections, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), or other reproductive system
Why It Is Done
A pelvic exam may be done:
* As part of a woman's regular physical checkup. A Pap test may be done
during the pelvic exam. For more information, see the medical test Pap Test.
* To detect vaginal infections, such as yeast infections or bacterial
* To help detect sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), such as chlamydia,
herpes, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, or human papillomavirus (HPV).
* To help determine the cause of abnormal uterine bleeding.
* To evaluate pelvic organ abnormalities, such as uterine fibroids, ovarian
cysts, or uterine prolapse.
* To evaluate abdominal or pelvic pain.
* Before prescribing a method of birth control (contraception). Some methods
of birth control, such as a diaphragm or intrauterine device, require a pelvic
exam to make sure the device fits properly.
Other procedures such as a digital rectal exam may be done
during your pelvic exam.