Page Type: Gynecology

LONG-ACTING BIRTH CONTROL

LONG-ACTING BIRTH CONTROL What are long-acting methods of birth control? Long-acting methods of birth control are devices or treatments that prevent pregnancy for months to years. These methods are the best choice for many people who want birth control, including teens. That’s because they work so well to prevent pregnancy. People who use them also …

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IUD

IUD What is an intrauterine device? An intrauterine device (IUD) is a type of birth control. It is a small, T-shaped device that a doctor or nurse puts in your uterus by going through your vagina and cervix. These devices are made of flexible plastic and have 2 thin plastic strings that hang out of …

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COLPOSCOPY

PELVIC ORGAN PROLAPSE What is cervical cancer screening? Screening tests look for cancer cells in the cervix. The cervix is the bottom part of the uterus, where it meets the vagina. Screening tests also look for cells that could turn into cancer, called “precancer.” They can find cervical cancer and precancer in the early stages, …

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PELVIC ORGAN PROLAPSE

PELVIC ORGAN PROLAPSE What is pelvic organ prolapse? Pelvic organ prolapse is a condition that affects the “pelvic floor.” The pelvic floor is the name for the muscles that support the organs in the pelvis, including the bladder, rectum, and uterus (figure 1). Pelvic organ prolapse is when these muscles relax too much. This causes …

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PAINFUL INTERCOURSE

PAINFUL INTERCOURSE What is dyspareunia? Dyspareunia is pain that happens just before, during, or after sex. It can happen in males and females, but is more common in females. In females, pain can affect the vulva, which is the area around the opening of the vagina. Or the pain can be inside the vagina or …

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BARTHOLIN’S CYST

BARTHOLIN’S CYST What is a Bartholin gland cyst? A Bartholin gland cyst is a small sac of fluid that forms when the opening of a Bartholin gland is blocked. There are 2 Bartholin glands, 1 on each side, just below5 the opening of the vagina (figure 1). The Bartholin glands make small amounts of fluid. …

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VAGINAL DISCHARGE

VAGINAL DISCHARGE What is vaginal discharge? “Vaginal discharge” is the term doctors use to describe the fluid that comes out of the vagina (figure 1). Vaginal discharge is made up of cells from the vagina and cervix, bacteria, mucus, and water. Can vaginal discharge be normal? Yes. Normally, people who get monthly periods can have …

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VAGINAL CANCER

VAGINAL CANCER What is vaginal cancer? Vaginal cancer happens when normal cells in the vagina (figure 1) change into abnormal cells and grow out of control. There are different types of vaginal cancer, depending on the cells involved. This article discusses cancer that starts in the vagina. But it is also possible for cancer to …

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ATROPHIC VAGINITIS

ATROPHIC VAGINITIS What is atrophic vaginitis? Atrophic vaginitis is a condition that causes the vagina and tissues near the vagina to get dry, thin, and inflamed. This can be uncomfortable or make sex painful. Atrophic vaginitis is sometimes called “vaginal atrophy.” Atrophic vaginitis happens when your body does not make enough of a hormone called …

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VAGINAL YEAST INFECTION

VAGINAL YEAST INFECTION What is a vulvovaginal yeast infection? A vulvovaginal yeast infection is an infection that causes itching and irritation of the vulva, the outer lips of the vagina (figure 1). This type of infection is usually caused by a fungus called “candida.” (Yeast are a type of fungus.) What are the symptoms of …

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