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    Why Are Yearly Pap Smears Important?

    Last updated 1 day 3 hours ago

    The Pap smear is a quick test your gynecologist can perform to check for any abnormal changes in the cells of your cervix. During a Pap smear, your gynecologist will place a speculum into the vagina and then use a small instrument to collect a sample of cells from the cervix. These cells are then sent to a laboratory for analysis. If you’re not sure when you should start or stop having Pap smears, you can turn to a local gynecologist for guidance. If you are wondering why Pap smears are so important, continue reading below.

    Early Detection of Precancerous Changes

    The most significant reason why having a yearly Pap smear is so important is because it can save lives. With a Pap smear, your gynecologist can detect potentially precancerous changes and treat the problem before it develops into cervical cancer. Thanks to Pap smears, cervical cancer is among the most preventable types of cancer. Additionally, it has now become common to undergo testing for the human papilloma virus (HPV) at the same time as the Pap test. The combination of these tests further increases the chances of detecting precancerous changes early on.

    Checkup for General Wellness

    Many women avoid going to their doctor’s office unless they become ill. However, preventive medicine is one of the cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle. By visiting your gynecologist at least once a year for your regular Pap smear, you can support your general wellness. You can ask your gynecologist questions about any unusual symptoms you’ve been experiencing or you may wish to talk about switching your method of birth control. The current guidelines recommend that all women begin having Pap smears at the age of 21. However, depending on your sexual history, your gynecologist might recommend getting them earlier. You should continue to have regular Pap smears throughout most of your life, even when you are not sexually active. Talk to your gynecologist for more specific recommendations based on your medical history.

    If you would like to schedule a Pap smear or other gynecology service, you can call Washington Surgi-Clinic at (202) 683-7336. Our women’s clinic in Washington, D.C. provides a full range of gynecology services at an affordable fee, including safe abortions. Women throughout the Virginia and Maryland areas are encouraged to visit our website to learn more about us.

    Common Triggers for Herpes Outbreaks

    Last updated 9 days ago

    Genital herpes is a chronic condition for which there is no cure. It goes through periods of remissions and flare-ups, though flare-ups tend to be most common in the first few years of infection and then wane. Controlling flare-ups is central to managing herpes. Knowing your triggers will help you keep flare-ups at bay.

    Not everyone with herpes has outbreak triggers, and what triggers a flare-up in one person may not affect someone else. However, there are some common things that tend to lead to outbreaks, including emotional stress, fatigue, and infections like the flu. Sometimes, a new sex partner or irritation in the genital area can cause herpes to flare-up. Some women experience symptoms during menstruation. If you have a condition that weakens the immune system, like HIV, then you may be more prone to outbreaks.

    The doctors at Washington Surgi-Clinic can diagnose herpes and help you learn to control it. Although there is no cure, there are medications that can reduce your discomfort. If you think you have herpes or another STD, make an appointment at our DC women’s clinic by calling (202) 683-7336.

    What Is Trichomoniasis?

    Last updated 16 days ago

    Trichomoniasis, also called trich, is a bacterial STD that mainly impacts women. It is a common cause of burning in the vaginal canal, or vaginitis. If you experience symptoms of trich, see your doctor as soon as possible, as it is curable with antibiotics.

    Watch this video to learn about the symptoms, treatment, and prevention of trich. Trich causes burning with urination, tender vaginal skin, and a discharge with a strong odor. Once diagnosed, a course of antibiotics can cure trich completely. You can avoid trich infection by using a barrier method of protection, such as a condom, when you’re sexually active.

    If you think you could have trich, make an appointment at the Washington Surgi-Clinic. We offer full-service gynecological care and abortions in our DC clinic. To make an appointment, call (202) 683-7336.

    How to Protect Your Vaginal Health

    Last updated 23 days ago

    For women, focusing on vaginal health is an important part of maintaining your overall wellbeing. The vagina is very sensitive, so adhering to certain rules about care can help you avoid irrigation and infection. Start by having regular appointments at your women’s health clinic and reporting any unusual symptoms to your doctor right away. These tips with also help your protect your vaginal health.

    Avoid Douching

    A healthy pH balance is central to vaginal health, and douching can throw that balance off. Douching reduces the acidity of the vagina, which creates the perfect environment for bacterial infection. If you’re douching because of vaginal odor, see your gynecologist instead. The odor may be the sign of an infection, and douching will only mask the symptom, not cure the cause.

    Practice Safe Sex

    Protect yourself from the transmission of diseases that impact your vaginal health by using a barrier protection, like a condom, when you are sexually active. Condoms reduce the risk of contracting many STDs, including HIV, syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. If you have symptoms of an STD, see your doctor right away, regardless of whether or not you used a condom. Some STDs are easier to treat in their early stages. Plus, when left untreated, some STDs can cause long-term complications, including fertility issues and even cancer.

    Have Check-Ups

    Women should begin having regular gynecological exams within three years of becoming sexually active or no later than age 21. During these exams, your doctor can diagnose problems with your vaginal health and detect cancer in its early stages. Most women should have a gynecological exam every one to three years, depending on the doctor’s recommendations.

    At Washington Surgi-Clinic, our doctors offer gynecological care to help you maintain your vaginal health. We also provide abortion services for patients in DC, Virginia, and Maryland. If you have questions about women’s health issues or abortion, make an appointment today. You can call our women’s clinic at (202) 683-7336.

    A Patient's Guide to Second Trimester Abortions

    Last updated 1 month ago

    For women seeking an abortion between 12 and 26 weeks of pregnancy, medications are not an option. Second trimester abortions usually involve a surgical procedure and may require two or more visits to the clinic to complete. There are a few different methods that can be used for second trimester abortions. Your doctor will discuss the procedures with you and explain which is the best choice for your needs. Here is a look at what you can expect.


    No matter which method of abortion your doctor chooses, it is necessary to dilate your cervix. To accomplish this, laminaria sticks are inserted gently into the cervix. The sticks are completely sterile and only used once. Because the laminaria sticks take time to work, you may be sent home and asked to return to the clinic the next morning. Some women experience cramping and nausea with the laminaria sticks. If you have intense pain, talk to your doctor.

    Abortion Procedure

    For second trimester abortions, doctors almost always choose dilation and curettage (D&C) or dilation and evacuation (D&E).  D&Cs can generally be performed up to 16 weeks and use a curettage tool to complete the abortion. D&E is more commonly used during the second trimester and uses suction and grasping instruments. You will be given an option to have general anesthesia, conscious sedation, or local anesthesia.

    After the Procedure

    After the abortion, you may experience spotting for a few weeks. You may need medications for pain and to contract your uterus. Your doctor will tell you when it is safe to become sexually active again. Your doctor will also discuss warning signs of complications or infections that you should report right away if you experience them.

    At Washington Surgi-Clinic, we’re committed to providing access to safe abortions and care before and after the procedure to women in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Let us help you understand your options for your reproductive health, including answering your questions about birth control and abortion. Schedule an appointment at our women’s clinic today by calling (202) 683-7336.

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