or irregular/skipped periods, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Your body might be trying to tell you something!
Prevention is always your best defense against future health problems, but no one can predict when or what types of problems may arise. So how do you know if your symptoms warrant a visit to your gynecologist? Here are some of the health-threatening signs that should persuade you to urgently call upon your Gynecologist
Pelvic pain and lower abdominal discomfort. It’s imperative to detail your gynecologist about what kind of pain you’re experiencing and its intensity. Does it appear suddenly? Does it run an intermittent course or is it constant? Is it associated with other symptoms? This information are important while formulating a proper diagnosis. Sharp pelvic pain may be a warning sign that you have an infection, a ruptured ovarian cyst, or an ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy growing outside the uterus) if you’re pregnant. More constant pain or a dull sense of fullness in the abdomen may raise doubts of uterine fibroids, which are non-malignant tumors.
Another potential source of regular pelvic pain is endometriosis, a common condition that is surrounded by myths, delayed diagnosis, trial-&-error treatments, and a lack of awareness, overlaid on diversified symptoms that symbolize a dogged, frustrating and, for many females, painfully and sometimes debilitating chronic condition. Some people think of endometriosis as nothing more than a synonym for bad menstrual cramps, but the ailment is graver than that. It is about uterine tissue lining implanting itself outside the uterus.
Principally, endometriosis is a, more or less, plumbing problem. Instead of being flushed during menstruation, the uterine tissue backs up into other parts of the body. Wherever it lands, it continues to respond to the hormones that control menstruation. The result is pain and bleeding wherever there’s endometrial tissue. This tissue; called implant, can be found in various areas of the body including the vagina, vulva, cervix, fallopian tubes, ovaries, peritoneum, pelvic cavity, bowel, and appendix
This distressing ailment affects 1 in 10 women worldwide. It not only causes physical symptoms such as pain, but also can affect other areas of a woman’s life including her professional and financial life, marital relationship, as well as quality of life itself. Many cases of female infertility when properly diagnosed were attributed to endometriosis.
Bleeding. Occasional spotting in between periods isn’t an alarming sign by its own self, but if it lasts for days or it evolves into a heavy bleeding and painful, it’s time to pay your gynecologist a visit. Several causes could be the reason; polycystic ovarian disease, intra-uterine device for birth control, injury to the vagina, infections and pelvic inflammatory disease. Also bleeding after you have stopped getting periods due to menopause warrants a Gynecologist consultation.
Problematic periods/missed period. Irregular or occasional periods can be a symptom of an underlying condition such as polycystic ovary disease or a hormone imbalance problem. If you miss your period, this could be a sign of being pregnant, or that there is another medical condition that calls for medical attention.
Abnormal discharge or pain in the genital area. If you notice a yellowish, greenish or dark-colored discharge that is foul smelling, it’s time to visit your gynecologist. It could signify presence of some infection, probably vaginal.
Burning micturition/Problems with urination. You might be suffering from a urinary tract infection which necessitates medical attention by your gynecologist. Millions of women experience involuntary loss of urine called urinary incontinence (UI). Some women may lose a few drops of urine while running or coughing.
Others may feel a strong, sudden urge to urinate just before losing a large amount of urine. This incontinence can be somewhat annoying or utterly unbearable. For some women, the risk of public embarrassment keeps them from enjoying many activities with their family and friends. Your gynecologist will assess your medical status and set a management plan to help you overcome this embarrassing problem.
A sincere advice to sum it up
Always pay attention to what your body is telling you. If you are experiencing any of the above warning signs, your gynecologist can assess the complaint, and provide treatment to help you restore your peace of mind and happy life at the earliest possible.
Gynecological services can be a tough topic for some women to discuss or address, sometimes even emotionally-distressing. Yet it is imperative to be proactive about your health. Generally, women have been always encouraged to visit a gynecologist on an annual basis. Visiting a gynecologist regularly helps with prevention and early detection for many women-related health issues.
Prof. Liselotte Mettler
Obstetrics & Gynecology Professor – Germany
Honorary chair of the Kiel School of Gynecological Endoscopy and Reproductive Medicine
General Secretary of the International Academy of Human Reproduction
Board member of the World Endometriosis Society
Avivo Clinics – German Medical Center DHCC