Gynaecology is a branch of medical practice that attends to the female reproductive system and diseases associated with them. Dealing with the regulation of menstrual cycles to caring for pregnant women from conception to delivery, a gynaecologist is trained to look after all aspects of female reproductive health. It is important to note that not all gynaecologists are obstetricians.
Ans: Adult women should consult a gynaecologist at least once a year irrespective of whether they are sexually active or not. Apart from regular check-ups, some of the reasons to consult a gynaecologist include:
Changes in the menstrual cycle
Pain or irritation in the vagina
Injury to the pelvic area
Symptoms of STDs
Ans: A gynaecologist may specialize in maternal-fetal medicine, reproductive endocrinology, gynaecologic oncology and urogynaecology. Obstetricians specialize in pregnancy and childbirth.
Ans: Gynaecology is a postgraduate specialization. Hence, the candidate must first complete his or her MBBS degree and then complete a postgraduate degree or diploma in gynaecology. Further specializations can also be done.
Ans: Girls should have their first check up by the time they reach puberty between the ages of 13 to15. They should also consult a gynaecologist after becoming sexually active.
Ans: A gynaecology examination will start with a physical examination of the vagina and internal reproductive organs. This examination is not painful but it may be a little uncomfortable.
Ans: Yes, if the gynaecologist suspects cancer, he or she may take a tissue sample and get it tested for the same. Gynaecologists can also perform breast examinations to check for breast cancer.
Ans: Once a woman becomes sexually active she must speak to her gynaecologist about birth control and family planning. Depending on the woman’s overall health the doctor can prescribe birth control pills or minor surgery to tie the fallopian tubes.
Ans: Yes, gynaecologists can diagnose and treat sexually transmitted diseases.
Ans: There is no need to prepare specifically, for example; shave or wax before the appointment. However if you have symptoms connected to your menstrual cycle, it may be better to consult the doctor when you are not on your period.
The consultation fee of a gynaecologist usually begins at Rs 600.
Normal delivery of a baby Rs 47,000-87,000
Caesarean delivery Rs 28,000- 90,000
Laparoscopic hysterectomy Rs 46,000- 1,00,000
Dilation and curettage surgery Rs 7,000-43,000
Some of the most common issues treated by gynaecologists include PCOD, sexual dysfunction, issues with menstruation, disorders related to breasts and fibroids or cancer of the reproductive organs. For the treatment of these and other conditions, some of the procedures that may be used include:
Pelvic ultrasounds – This diagnostic exam is non-invasive and helps study the organs in the female pelvis, including vagina, cervix, fallopian tubes, uterus and ovaries.
Hysteroscopy – This procedure involves the examination of the uterine cavity via endoscopy, by going through the cervix.
Colposcopy – This medical procedure offers a magnified view of the tissues of the vulva, vagina and the cervix, to check for lesions.
Hysterectomy – In this method, the uterus and surrounding organs like ovaries, fallopian tubes and cervix are surgically removed.
Dilation and curettage – As a procedure which is used in case of abortion or third trimester miscarriage, dilation and curettage refers to the surgical removal of uterine lining and contents, after dilating the cervix.