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Date of last update: 10/15/2017.

Forum Name: Gastroenterology Topics

Question: Question about Abdominal Exam..?

 Sea Swirl - Sat Jun 04, 2005 3:25 pm


Thanks in advance for taking the time to read this. :D

I'm a 27 yo female, and I'm wondering how much (if anything) a doctor
can evaluate about the uterus and ovaries just from an abdominal exam, from the outside - no pelvic or internal stuff.

I am a virgin and could never, EVER go through a gyn exam
(I think I'd rather die), but I would like to start doing anything else I can for preventative health care.
I just recently surmounted a 10 year phobia of the dentist, and now go there regularly, and I've gone to doctors for verbal consults.
However, I haven't had a physical since I was a child, and I think I'm finally ready to get a GP and at least have a basic exam and breast exam, sans the gyn parts.

I was molested as a child and have a very difficult time with physical contact,
but I am pretty responsible and would like to get as much checked out as I can tolerate.
So is a regular abdominal exam at least somewhat useful for evaluating the
uterus and ovaries?

Is it "better than nothing," at least..?

Any feedback is greatly appreciated.
 Dr. Wafaa Abdel-Hadi - Sat Jun 04, 2005 4:12 pm

Dear Sea Swirl,

Well, i cannot answer your question until i know what do you complain of.. and but definately an ultrasound is more accurate than abdominal examination ... with regular(physical examination) we try to detect any abnormality ...then we confirm it wit hultrasound or other imaging techniques...but if you complain of something that we cannot detect on examination that might be because it's too small for our hands to reach we order further investigations.

Best regards,
 Sea Swirl - Sat Jun 04, 2005 4:18 pm

Thanks for responding.

I actually don't have any complaints or pain right now. But people keep telling me to get
regular exams as a matter of prevention or just being responsible about my body. I was just curious about if a doctor can actually feel the ovaries and uterus through the abdominal wall or not... For instance, if you had a lump in your uterus, could that be felt without doing an internal exam?

Yes, I was reading about the abdominal ultrasound. It's good to know that that is an option if I ever did have a complaint.

 Dr. Wafaa Abdel-Hadi - Sat Jun 04, 2005 4:26 pm

You are still young... as long as you don't complain of any pains, your period is regular with nmo menstrual abnormalities...then you're safe regarding teh gynaecological point of view.
Unless you have a family history of gynaecological problems and you want to check it out?

Like I said...if u have a pathology (mass,cyst,etc) and it's too small... it's very hard to detect it by physical examination.. they have to do an internal...and in your case(a virgin)...and not complaining of anything... a pelvic ultrasound woul dbe your best approach.

Best regards,
 Sea Swirl - Sat Jun 04, 2005 4:29 pm

That is good news. Thank you so much for the feedback.. I feel relieved! :D I don't have family history of any gynecological cancers or anything like that.

( I do have dysmenorrhea and take meds for that, but very regular periods, no pain or bleeding between periods or anything like that.)

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