Health Status Evaluation
Each year, you should make an appointment with your physician to have a health status evaluation, both to preserve existing good health and to catch any abnormalities or conditions at an early stage.
The following areas will be reviewed during your health status evaluation:
- Alcohol, tobacco and other drug use
- Cardiovascular risk factors
- Breast exam to check for lumps or any abnormalities
- Fertility planning and preparation
- High-risk sexual practices
- Level of physical activity
- Physical exam (height, weight, BMI and blood pressure)
- Psychosocial concerns (life/work concerns or domestic violence)
- Sexually transmitted infection screening
After you become sexually active or after the age of 21, your physician will recommend a yearly pelvic exam, as well as a breast, skin and neck exam. The pelvic exam is different from a pap smear screening, which is also recommended after the age of 21. During a pap smear, a small brush swabs the cervix for abnormal cells. The collected cells are then sent to a lab and examined under a microscope, usually returning results within 14 days.
Up until the age of 30, women should have a pap smear screening once every three years. After 30 and until the age of 65, it is recommended that women have a pap smear, co-testing for HPV, once every five years. After the age of 65 or following a hysterectomy where the cervix was removed, women can stop having a regular pap smear.
If there is an abnormal result on a pap smear, an additional test, called a colposcopy, and increased surveillance are most often recommended.
For More Information
For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 847.570.5020.