Post # 1
I’m 29 and I haven’t had a physical in…over 5 years. Yikes! I see my gyno regularly for my annual pap and my neurologist (migraines and epilepsy) every 6 months. I also have a gastroenterologist, that I was seeing regularly…but she’s kind of mean and not very sympathetic so I just decided to suck up my issues (which have improved) and just not see her. Last year I had weird palpitations and had to see a cardiologist who determined that I had an irregular heartbeat and possibly a hole in my heart.
I want to be a nurse but I have this thing with doctors and fear that I have too many so I don’t want to add a GP into the mix.
So bees, how often do you get checked out? Anyone else have a fear of too many doctors? Anyone want to reem me out for being an irrational baby? 🙂
Post # 3
@notbridey: You might be interested in this research that showed no apparent benefit from having annual exams:
Post # 4
My therapist (M.D.) seems to consider my visits to the gyno every 6 mos as good as a phyiscal.
I don’t see why I should go to for a physical when I regularly get poked and prodded by my gyno. Everyone should go get a physical every year or see a gyno for their pap.
I skipped my pap smears for three years and ended up needing a leep to get rid of high risk cervical cancer cells. I had only had a couple partners, never had unprotected sex, was 25 and had the gardisil shot, so I thought I was low risk and saw no problem skipping.
Thank god I needed a physical for law school or I would probably have developed cervical cancer. As it was, I needed to have a leep procedure which can effect your ability to have kids.
Don’t mean to preach, but you all should get paps regularly. I never miss one now! 🙂
Post # 5
I have to get them for work like every few years… I’m not sure what the health benefit would be otherwise… I just go in and say yup, I’m healthy =) But, with all your specialists, it may benefit you to see a GP just to keep track of everything for you. Just to put someone’s name on papers and where to send their consult notes.
Post # 6
I’m required to do an annual physical but that’s mostly a liability thing for my work, but am currently considered low risk for a pap smear (10 years in a row with no unusual results) and am now only required/paid for to go bi-annually for that part.
Post # 7
@lawyerchick13: This may be too personal so you don’t have to answer, but, I’m immunized too, and just had an abnormal pap. Had you been exposed to HPV prior to getting immunized, is that why your paps turned abnormal? Also, LEEPs do cause possible premature labor but the risks are very, very slim and the docs I work with say that it doesn’t inhibit your chances of conceiving, just slightly increased risk for early labor =) Just thought I would tell you that little tidbit to put your mind at ease if it does at all! =)
Post # 8
Ihaven’t been to my gynocologist in almost 3 years. I will be going in a few months. As far as a physical goes- last one I got was 4 years ago. I am a nurse though so I take care of myself.
Post # 9
@ChuckNorris: Yes, I know that, but thanks for the reassurance. 🙂 I had a LOT of trouble clearing the low grade cells so I was worried about needing a second leep. My immune system kinda sucks. I didn’t have a normal pap for a couple years so I worried about it before every visit. I had my first normal pap this Nov!
And I don’t mind answering your question. I did have protected sex with one partner before the shot. He was not a virgin when we met, but had only had one partner protected sex prior to me. Of course there is no telling how many people that person slept with. My doctor also said that the guardsil shot doesn’t protect against all strains of the virus and it could have been from one of my subsequent partners.
Hope this helps! And don’t worry about the leep, if you need one, it really doesn’t hurt. (A lot of people told me it would be the worst pain ever! Just request a painkiller.) Good luck!
Post # 10
The last physical I had was a year and a half ago, it was just a follow up after my blood clot though. I saw my gyno about that time too. I used to go yearly but when I moved I never set up another appointment. This thread inspired me to make an appointment, tomorrow!
Post # 11
@lawyerchick13: so then you definitely were HPV positive?? I guess my question is, is it possible to have low grade changes without being exposed to HPV, do you know? I had an ASCUS pap with negative HPV (We think…my docyor’s office was being a pain that day!) so I don’t think I should be worried but I work a colpo/LEEP clinic 2 times per month and it definitely scares me how common it is! I would ask my doctor coworkers but I don’t know how to do it without revealing too much about my medial history lol
Post # 12
Geez, sorry about all the typ-O’s, im on my phone and the autocorrect on WB from my phone makes me want to punch things lol
Post # 13
@ChuckNorris: To my knowledge, you can’t have low grade changes without having the HPV virus. However, have you had a colposcopy? Do you know for certain you have low grade changes? Abnormal paps can be caused by things other than HPV.
Regarding your co workers, if you work with doctors, I would just ask them. My (ex) doctors office called me, on my last day of work, right before my going away party, to tell me I had precancerous cell changes. All I heard was CANCER, CANCER, CANCER. I had no idea what she meant. I was so upset that I hung up. I called back 15 minutes later to ask exactly what that meant and what the timeframe was on this whole dying of cancer thing, and the nurse on the other line pretty much said Iwill get cancer or might already have it. I called back twice more and got the same answer. I even asked her about chemo and she said you will need treatment and left it at that. Seriously. She was AWFUL.
I was at work, and I had a total breakdown right before my going away party. I was convinced I was about to die and would need chemo therapy. In any event, I was visibly upset, and I was close to two women in upper management. They noticed, and I ended up telling them I thought I was going to die. One of the women said she had something that sounded similar, and it wasn’t all that serious. She was quite open with me. It didn’t really effect our professional relationship, I’m still in touch with her and she gives me recommendations. It really is quite common.
If your close to any of the doctors at your office, I would just take one aside and tell her what your going through and ask for medical advice. I was pretty open with several of my friends about the whole experience as I spend about 24 hours convinced I was going to die. Why bother to hide what is technically an STD if death is imminent. Later, I found out that almost everyone had a mother or older sister who had gone through the same thing. Most of my friends were in their early 20’s so had experienced it yet. My point being, its really not something to be ashamed about. I wouldn’t shout it from the roof tops, but I wouldn’t feel embarrassed mentioning it to a medical professional either.
I know for me a google search made me feel better. (Yes, the nurse was that bad at explaining the situation to me. I waited 24 hours to do the search, cause the internet almost never makes you feel better about your symptoms) And a consultation with a really good gyno made me feel infinitely better.
Post # 14
I went for a long time without a physical, because I was going to various doctors to deal with various issues that involved quite a bit of testing. I’ve also had monitoring of conditions. There probably were a few things that should have been checked and weren’t during this time, but there wouldn’t have been much.
I don’t see the point of only scheduling a pap smear (I don’t even think most doctors would do that), without a physical unless it was something that was being followed up on. So yes, an annual exam = a physical to me, although a physical may not be done annually. I don’t consider a pap = ‘an annual’. Physical exams don’t have to include pap smears either.
Post # 15
I have a physical and pap every year. I don’t go to a gyno though. My regular physician just does my pap during my physical, but I do consider them separate things since you can have one without the other.
Post # 16
Between my gyno once a year and my cardiologist 3 times a year I figure I am covered.