5 Tips to Improve Your Visit to the OB-GYN

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5 Tips to Improve Your Visit to the OB-GYN

3. Know your Pap
More than 70 percent of women don't have a clue what type of Pap smear they get. The newer, liquid-based tests filter out blood and other fluids, which makes cervical cell samples easier to read. "This test is especially relevant for young and sexually active women who are at a higher risk of contracting HPV, the virus that can cause cervical cancer," says Cossler. According to a study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, more than 80 percent of doctors' offices have adopted the liquid-based Paps, but you should still ask what kind your doctor uses. If it turns out that you do receive conventional Pap smears, you can ensure you get a more accurate reading by not scheduling your appointment during or right after your period, because blood can cloud the results. And put a stamp on your sex life the night before your exam. "Having vaginal intercourse may irritate and inflame the cells that line your cervix, which makes the Pap smear harder for labs to interpret," explains Godfrey.

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