The annual gynecologic exam is one of the most commonly scheduled physician office visits. A woman should schedule her first gynecology exam no later than age 21, or within three years of becoming sexually active, or at any age when there is a need for counseling regarding contraception or sexuality. This routine screening exam consists of a complete history taking and physician exam. The exam encompasses women's general health issues and cancer screening for the Breast, Cervix, Uterus, and Ovaries.
At Texas Gynecology and Laser Surgery Center, many topics are covered during a comprehensive annual exam including contraception, preconceptual conunseling, sexual dysfunction, and STD counseling. The Pap smear is only one component of the exam and is used to screen for cervical cancer. Cervical Cancer is caused by a sexually transmitted virus called the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). In 2006 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of the Gardasil vaccine in women. Gardasil can prevent the transmission of HPV, and is the first vaccine ever produced which can actually prevent cancer. The HPV vaccine is recommended for girls and young women from ages 9 to 26. In this age group, it is most effective when given prior to first sexual activity. It is considered a routine adolescent vaccination. The Gardasil® vaccine is now available at our facility.