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After Hysterectomy, Pelvic Exams Are Still Necessary

Do I still need pelvic exams after my hysterectomy?​

“Yes, you should continue seeing your gynecologist for an annual well-woman exam, which includes a pelvic exam,” says Michael Leung, M.D., a board-certified specialist in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic.

Dr. Leung says that well-woman exams remain an important part of a woman’s overall health routine even after a hysterectomy.

“A well-woman exam usually involves a pelvic and breast exam, as well as screening for osteoporosis, and, when relevant, management of menopause and bladder symptoms,” he says. “A referral to a gastroenterologist for a colonoscopy may also be advised.”

Dr. Leung says pelvic exams allow the doctor to screen for infections and evidence of cancers.

“The pelvic exam may also include a Pap smear – a simple procedure, usually performed in a doctor’s office – where a sample of cells is taken from the cervix and examined in a laboratory for abnormalities,” he adds.

Dr. Leung says that Pap screening may be discontinued for women who have had a total hysterectomy – the complete removal of the cervix along with the uterus – for noncancerous reasons, as long as they have no history of abnormal Pap tests.

“Continuing with your annual well-woman exams is a responsible way to help care for your health after menopause or a hysterectomy,” concludes Dr. Leung.

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Michael Leung, MD, FACOG

As a male provider in this field, I recognize that patients have a choice in whom they choose based not only on credentials and qualifications, but gender as well. As such, I strive to be twice as patient, empathetic and understanding to gain the trust of my patients. It is my goal that when patients choose me to take care of them, they don't see me as a male OB/GYN, but rather the best OB/GYN for them."