While many places work in a similar fashion to their approach to women’s’ health services, a comprehensive physician’s office works to become the forerunner for women when considering where to get care and treatment. A great example of a comprehensive women’s health service provider is Treasure Valley Family Medicine in Meridian, Idaho. With a focus on comprehensive, compassionate care with a personal touch, they strive to bring the best possible care to women in all stages of life. Care and treatment are tailored to each woman individually, allowing both the patient and the caregiver to ensure they have time and answers they need to decide all of the best options for them directly.
Your family medical center should have specialized service options to make sure their female patients keep as healthy as possible. All women from the age of 21 through 65 are encouraged to get a Pap smear exam to screen for cervical cancer every three years between the ages of 21 to 29 and every five years thereafter until 65 years old. Co-testing is also encouraged at this stage, which tests for HPV, the leading cause of cervical cancer. If the Pap smear or HPV tests do happen to come back abnormal, can also assist with additional testing such as a colposcopy. Many of these comprehensive offices will also work with a prenatal specialist once an expecting mother is around 20 weeks pregnant. This is not uncommon so don’t let that deter you from working with your family physician in those early months.
Another treatment option in women’s care is the Endometrial (uterine) biopsy. This is an in office procedure that takes a small sample of endometrial tissue from your uterus that is then sent to a pathologist for review. A small straw like tool is inserted that removes that small bit of tissue that can be sent for a biopsy. This procedure is used when a woman has an abnormal menstrual cycle, postmenopausal bleeding or if the results of a Pap smear show abnormal cells.
Women will also find family planning and contraceptive options as well. Women will find similar to the way Treasure Valley Family Medicine approaches women’s’ health services overall, they can get guidance in choosing what contraceptive choice will work best for her. Alongside the more traditional options like birth control pills Treasure Valley Family Medicine offers options such as the Intrauterine Device (IUD). This is a small device that is inserted directly into the uterus and provides protection for several years or until removal. These IUDs come in two types, hormonal and non-hormonal. Those hormonal types contain a small amount of progesterone that reduces bleeding and cramping. Some women start having very light periods or stop menstruating entirely when using one of these types. The most common one on the market today is Mirena, which last five years. The non-hormonal types last around 10 years and have no other impact on bleeding or cramping.
A proactive attitude to women’s health care can prevent future issues and can greatly assist in the treatment of any current issues that may come up. Ask your physician what women’s’ services they have available for keeping your optimal health.