Role of annual well-woman assessment reviewed

Role of annual well-woman assessment reviewed
For women, an annual assessment is an important part of medical care and should include screening, evaluation, and counseling, according to a Committee Opinion published online July 23 in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

(HealthDay) -- For women, an annual assessment is an important part of medical care and should include screening, evaluation, and counseling, according to a Committee Opinion published online July 23 in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

The Committee on Gynecologic Practice of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, based in Washington D.C., reviewed the role of an annual health assessment in women's medical care.

The researchers note that the annual health assessment represents a fundamental part of and is important for promotion of preventive practices, recognizing risk factors for disease, identifying medical problems, and establishing a relationship between the clinician and patient. The annual health assessment should include screening, assessments, and counseling, as well as immunizations, when necessary, based on age and risk factors. A key element of the health assessment is the physical examination, with components that may vary based on the patient's age, , and physician preference. The committee recommends that, regardless of sexual activity, speculum examinations for cervical cancer should begin at age 21 years; pelvic examinations should always be conducted in patients who report or exhibit symptoms suggestive of female genital tract, pelvic, urologic, or rectal problems; annual examinations may be modified for asymptomatic patients, without complicating medical issues, who have undergone a total hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy for benign indications; breast self-awareness should be encouraged; and clinical breast examinations should be performed annually in women aged 40 years or older and every one to three years for those aged 20 to 39 years. The decision to perform any pelvic or breast examination should be made with the consent of the patient.

"An annual visit provides an excellent opportunity to counsel patients about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and minimizing health risks," the authors write.

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Intimate examinations should not be performed without consent

Jun 20, 2008

[B]Editorial: Informed consent and intimate examinations[/B] Intimate examinations, performed by medical students on anaesthetised patients, are often carried out without adequate consent from patients, but this violates the ...

OB/GYN screening may help detect heart disease risk

Mar 26, 2012

Simple screening implemented in obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) clinics may identify previously undetected heart disease risk among women and has the potential to greatly increase education about prevention and treatment ...

Recommended for you

Tips, myths surrounding breastfeeding

Sep 30, 2014

Breastfeeding is the method of infant feeding recommended by the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and ...

Joint effort in standardizing due date estimation

Sep 23, 2014

(HealthDay)—The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine, and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine have jointly released new recommendations ...

AWHONN recommends reducing overuse of labor induction

Sep 23, 2014

The Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) is calling upon healthcare providers and pregnant women to avoid induction of labor at any time during pregnancy unless it is medically necessary.

User comments